M-A girls tune up for showdown with their 14th straight victory


The Menlo-Atherton girls continued their hold on a share of first place in the PAL South Division basketball race following a 60-23 romp over visiting Aragon on Wednesday.

The Bears improved to 7-0 in league (17-2 overall) with their 14th straight triumph and stayed tied with Hillsdale (7-0), which held off Mills, 62-60, in overtime.

Hillsdale and Menlo-Atherton will meet for the only time in league play on Wednesday at M-A at 5:30 p.m.

Against Aragon, the Bears got off to a fast start thanks to a smothering defense highlighted by steals from juniors Ilana Baer and Megan Sparrow. All five starters scored in the first quarter with sophomore Carly McLanahan scoring five of her 10 points in the period.

At the half, the Bears were comfortably up by 40-4 following a 12-point second quarter from sophomore Greer Hoyem and five more points from McLanahan. Hoyem finished with a game-high 19 points. The Bears continued to roll in the third period with 18 points as Baer scored six of her eight points and freshman Mele Kailahi tallied four of her six.

In the West Bay Athletic League (Foothill Division), Sacred Heart Prep got 16 points from Riley Hemm and 13 from Ma'ata Makoni in a 61-41 triumph over host Castilleja on Thursday night. Gracie Battles added 12 points for SHP (2-3, 14-4).

Castilleja (0-5, 8-10) trailed by only a one after one period before SHP put up 23 points in the second quarter to grab a 35-17 halftime lead. Ellie Chen had 11 points of her 17 points for Castilleja in the first period. Cate Alder tallied her 500th career point en route to 14 points, and had five rebounds and five assists for Castilleja. Freshman teammate Anika Adzich had a career-high 11 rebounds.

Boys basketball

Menlo-Atherton continued to hold on to first place in the PAL South Division following a 73-53 romp over host Aragon on Wednesday.

The Bears (7-0, 16-2) raced to a 20-9 first-quarter lead as Christian Fioretti had five points and Lucas Fioretti and Eric Norton each had four. M-A increased the lead to 38-15 paced by Lucas Fioretti's five second-quarter points.

The Dons scored 23 fourth-quarter points on seven 3-pointers, but never got closer than 20 points after the Bears rolled to their early advantage.

Blake Henry led M-A with 12 points and six boards. Lucas Fioretti and Christian Fioretti each had 11 points, with Lucas adding four steals. Norton and Reed Fratt each had eight points, with Norton chipping in five rebounds.

M-A leads Burlingame (6-1) by a single game, with the teams scheduled to meet on Feb. 9 in the Bears' gym. M-A will finish off a three-game week by visiting Sequoia on Friday before hosting Sacred Heart Prep on Saturday in a nonleague game at 6 p.m.

In the SCVAL De Anza Division, Gunn and Palo Alto took different directions while tuning up for their showdown on Friday (7:45 p.m.).

Gunn (5-1, 12-1) maintained its hold on first place with a 55-37 victory over host Los Altos as Alex Gil-Fernandez led the way with 14 points.

Palo Alto (3-3, 12-6) fell into a three-way tie for third place following a 79-66 loss to Wilcox at Gunn High. The Chargers (4-2, 12-5) made 13 treys and overcame a 16-7 first-quarter deficit by outscoring the Vikings, 58-31, over the second and third periods. Max Dorward led Paly with 17 points with Miles Tention adding 14.

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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