Yucaipa girls basketball team continues to excel

YHS girls basketball players celebrate a recent win.

The Yucaipa High girls basketball team finished the Citrus Belt League Undefeated, earning a bye in the first round of CIF play and won in the second round.

The Yucaipa High School girls basketball team finished the Citrus Belt League and celebrated senior night with a commanding victory over second place Cajon High School 58-37. Leanne Cuevas lead the T-birds by scoring 28 points including six 3-pointers and eight rebounds.

Macy McKibban also hit three 3-pointers and had 15 points and 6 rebounds. Grace Estrada added 5 rebounds, 7 assists and 5 steals to go with her 8 points. Nicole Calbreath added 7 points with 5 rebounds and 3 steals. Seniors Leanne Cuevas, Grace Estrada, Jazmin Gibson, Macy McKibban and Peyton Shalhoub were recognized and presented before the game with their families.

The T-birds headed into the CIF Playoffs with a record of 21-4 overall, 10-0 in the Citrus Belt League and ranked 6th in CIF Division 2A. As a result the team was granted a bye out of the first round and a home game for the second round. The stage was set for a great event and the community of Yucaipa did NOT disappoint! A crowd of more than 500 people showed up to support the Lady T-birds and the girls came through.

After a slow start, only 5 points in the first quarter, the offense exploded in the second and went into halftime with a 10 point lead 30-20. There was a scary moment when Senior Jazmin Gibson sustained an injury to her jaw when she caught an elbow while on defense and had to leave the game. The T-birds lead by 13 at the end of 3 quarters 45-32. In the 4th, the Mayfair Monsoons came fighting back and cut the lead to 6 with a score of 47-41 when Peyton Shalhoub came up big with a 2 point jump shot that was much needed by the T-birds. This started the Thunderbirds scoring again and the final was 61-46. Leanne Cuevas again lead the team in scoring with 15 points, 6 steals & 6 rebounds while Grace Estrada came close to a triple double with 13 points, 11 rebounds, 7 assists and 9 steals. Macy McKibban added 12 points and 5 rebounds with Peyton Shalhoub and Rachael Peters adding 9 points each and Hailey Estrada finished off the scoring with 3.

The Thunderbirds head to Peninsula High School in Palos Verdes for the Quarterfinals on Wednesday, February 19 at 7p.m.. No Lady T-bird basketball team has ever reached the Quarterfinals before. If they win they will play in the Semi-finals Saturday, February 22 possibly at Yucaipa High School.


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