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Varsity basketball girls host semifinal contest
Head coach Joseph Dalpogetti offers some instruction as the Escalon Lady Cougars catch their breath in between periods. The varsity basketball girls defeated Sonora in the quarterfinals on Feb. 15 and host West Campus on Tuesday night, Feb. 20 in the SJS Division 4 semifinals with a 7 p.m. tip off time. Marg Jackson/The Times

The Cougar Dome will be the site Tuesday night, Feb. 20 for semifinal basketball action, as the Lady Cougars host West Campus. The 7 p.m. tip off features the number three seed Escalon girls taking on number seven West Campus with the winner earning a spot in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division 4 championship game. That match is set at UC Davis on Friday at 6 p.m.

West Campus comes in as the number seven seed and upset number 2 Marysville by one point, 40-39, in the Feb. 15 quarterfinals. Escalon defeated Sonora in the quarterfinal round, 48-27.

“They have two very good guards,” said Escalon head coach Joseph Dalpogetti of West Campus. “One averages 20 and the other 12 and then a big post who averages 10. We will have our work cut out for us defensively.”

On the other side of the bracket, number one seed Colfax plays host to number four Riverbank with a 7 p.m. start time Tuesday; the winner there moves on to face the winner of the Escalon-West Campus contest for the D4 blue banner.

For Escalon, this is their second straight trip to the semifinals and with two postseason wins already, they are guaranteed a spot in the Nor Cals, also for the second straight year.

“Our story isn’t done yet,” Dalpogetti said.

He is asking fans to “pack the gym” tonight to support the team.

There is also an individual milestone looming for senior Macie Vickers, an added dimension to the contest.

“Macie is at 995 points right now. She should reach her 1000 with two games minimum left,” Dalpogetti said. “Quite an accomplishment when considering she only got 12 COVID games as a freshman and sat out 19 games this season.”

Escalon comes in to the Tuesday night game with an overall record of 27-2, they were 10-2 in Trans-Valley League play to earn a piece of the title. West Campus was 12-0 in their Greater Sacramento League to take first place and have posted a 22-6 overall record.