Improving to a 12-3 overall record, Escalon’s varsity Lady Cougars opened up Trans-Valley League play with a win, getting past Riverbank 46-42 on Thursday, Jan. 7.
On the strength of a 22-point, 19-rebound effort from Shelby McCune, the varsity squad came from behind to get the league-opening win. McCune made a big impact at the free throw line, converting on 10-of-15 attempts. Riverbank had a 12-11 lead after one quarter, 24-22 at the half. But Escalon outscored the visiting Lady Bruins 11-7 in the third and 13-11 in the fourth to nail down the victory.
Also coming up big in the TVL win was Sarah Leal, who had a double-double as well, scoring 14 points and pulling down 12 rebounds. Jenelle Anderson notched seven points for Escalon.
Escalon had closed out preseason earlier in the week, on the road at Summerville for a Jan. 5 game. Though that game went down as a 39-32 loss, Haley Boyd made some noise from beyond the arc, knocking down four treys and leading her team with 12 points. Leal had eight points and battled it out under the boards, recording 20 rebounds. Natalie Gonzalez chipped in with five points.
Escalon’s JV girls, meanwhile, came away from the game against Summerville with a 32-30 overtime win in hand. Tied at 27-27 to end regulation, the young Lady Cougars outscored the host Bears 5-3 in the extra frame.
They also won their league opener against Riverbank, defeating the JV Lady Bruins by a 31-18 final score. Leading the way were Alondra Martinez with seven points and Emily McPherrin with five.
This week, both girls’ teams were scheduled to host Ripon on Tuesday night, Jan. 12 after The Times went to press and will be at Ripon Christian for a Thursday night contest, Jan. 14. They will go back on the road Tuesday, Jan. 19 for a game at Hughson.