Menlo boys basketball coach Keith Larsen looked on the bright side. There’s open gym coming up in a few weeks.
“We’ll be fine,” Larsen said after The King’s Academy 67-53 victory in the semifinals of the Central Coast Section Division IV ended Menlo’s season Thursday night. “We have 16 (of 18 players) coming back. We can play.”
Liking it to a recreation league, Larsen figured this season produced so many turns, twists and curves for most teams that there’s no comparison to a regular season.
“First off, I’ve never coached graduates before and never coached in June,” Larsen said, referring to recent Menlo grads Chris Cook and Hunter Riley, who were so busy planning for finals, proms and graduation, they could drop in for a practice or two. “You talk about senioritis in March and now it’s June and they’ve got so many commitments.”
Cook and Riley combined for 23 points. Cook made all five shots he attempted and Riley added seven rebounds.
“It’s hard when you can’t practice and can’t get the reps,” Larsen said. “The seniors still came out here and gave us everything they had.”
Lucas Vogel, who led Menlo (7-10) with 16 points, sank a pair of free throws to put Menlo ahead 43-42 in the final minute of the third quarter after the team trailed for most of the game.
The King’s Academy responded by scoring 23 of the next 28 points to take control.
“It’s like getting a little taste of playoff basketball,” Larsen said. “It’s faster, quicker. We’ll be fine just as long as we get to next year.”
Junior Ava Shenk scored three goals and top-seeded Sacred Heart Prep beat visiting Willow Glen 16-2 in the quarterfinals of the Central Coast Section girls lacrosse tournament Thursday.
Senior Lauren Hagerty and freshman Tessa Espinosa each added two goals and two assists for the Gators (11-3), who will host either Los Gatos or Mountain View in Tuesday’s semifinal match.
Junior Ellie Noto and senior Genna Gibbons each scored twice and added an assist for SHP, which played its first postseason lacrosse match as the CCS is sponsoring its first tournament for the sport.
Junior Kat Showalter added a goal and assist while senior Kalista Hurel, sophomores Samantha Firmin and Emily Leschin and freshman Alex Precourt also scored.
The Gators dominated action but sophomore Lauren Hall did get a chance to record a couple of saves for the West Bay Athletic League champions.
In another quarterfinal Thursday, sixth-seeded Gunn fell to host third-seeded Mitty 13-9.
The Titans, who finished 8-7 overall, fell behind 3-0 before rallying to keep the game close.
Irene Kim, Chloe Li, and Stella Manning each scored twice for Gunn. Sophia Stern, Tess Flinchbaugh, and Sheerya Sethuraman also scored. Brinda Jaeger recorded nine saves.