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Our Sac-Joaquin Edition contributors break out their crystal balls and break down the SJS Hoops Playoffs.   GIRLS     DIVISION I  THE FAVORITE:...

Our Sac-Joaquin Edition contributors break out their crystal balls and break down the SJS Hoops Playoffs.


St. Mary’s-Stockton (21-5). The Rams are the defending Div. I champions and the favorite until someone in the section beats them on the court. Not playing the final game at McNair on Feb. 13 didn’t hurt either team’s playoff push, just the fans wanting to see that matchup again. Even the loss of Bri Moore hasn’t slowed St. Mary’s with Charise Holloway, Kat Tudor and Naje Murray leading the charge.
  CONTENDERS: Nevada Union-Grass Valley (21-4); Napa (23-1); McClatchy-Sacramento (23-2); Oak Ridge- El Dorado Hills (22-4)
  BRACKET BUSTER: River City-Sacramento (22-4): The Raiders have been rolling this season with the return of Carmen Garica, who missed her junior year to a knee injury. Add in Tori Torres and Aliyah Brantley, the Raiders could make a deep run with a little luck.
  ONE PLAYER TO WATCH: Sidney Porter (Nevada Union). The senior guard is a three-year starter for the Miners. Porter went off for 38 points in a non-league win over Sacramento in overtime 88-83 on Feb. 10. She can shoot from long range and has the ability to go in the paint often thanks to the pressing defense of the Miners.
  FINALS PREDICTION: St. Mary’s 64, Nevada Union 51



  THE FAVORITE: Jesuit-Carmichael (24-3). The Marauders quickly reloaded with the senior trio of Lake Lutes, Brady Anderson and Nick Hilton returning the program to the postseason after a rare losing season a year ago. Head coach Greg Harcos has junior point guard Isaiah Bailey to distribute to the experienced scorers, which could make for a lengthy playoff run.
  CONTENDERS: Rodriguez-Fairfield (23-2); River City (21-6); Golden Valley-Merced (21-6); Merced (21-6).
  BRACKET BUSTER: Monterey Trail-Elk Grove (20-7). The Mustangs are always a scoring run away from victory with sharpshooting senior guards Sanam Jhajj and Leondre Lintz capable of catching fire from beyond the arc. The pair hoisted nearly half of the team’s 494 3-point attempts and made 45% of their long-range shots.
  ONE PLAYER TO WATCH: Cole Taira (Kennedy-Sacramento). The 5-foot-6 sophomore point guard has energized the Cougars (19-8) since he burst onto the scene last season, and has kept the momentum. He can fill the stat sheet with his sharp shooting and pin-point feeds, and contributes with attributes not seen in the box score.
  FINALS PREDICTION: Jesuit 66, Rodriguez 58.


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