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Righetti's shooters started out as cool as the chilly air inside the Righetti gymnasium Thursday night.

When the Warriors warmed up, shorter Santa Ynez simply couldn't stay with them.

The Warriors made it a runaway, out-scoring the Pirates 23-3 in the second quarter, and finished with a 69-44 on opening night of the St. Joseph/Righetti Winter Tournament.

Righetti. which led 42-13 at halftime, went to 2-1. Santa Ynez is 1-3. Righetti coach Desiree Hitch worked with St. Joseph coach Ed Torres to put the tournament together after the Tournament of Champions at Santa Barbara, which both teams were to play in, was cancelled because of the Thomas fire.

After going 1-for-9 to start, Righetti's shooters warmed up in a hurry. Ashley Reynoso scored inside on a third-chance shot to put the Warriors ahead to stay at 5-3, and Righetti scored on its next six possessions.

"We started out kind of slow, and I think that was just because of us not having many games," said Hitch. Righetti was to start its season with an appearance in the Gold Coast Tournament in Carpinteria, but the tourney was cancelled because of the Thomas fire.

After taking mainly 3-point shots early, the Warriors consistently got the ball inside to Reynoso. Reynoso scored 12 points.

She didn't score after intermission. The Pirates double-teamed her in the lane and Reynoso, who passed efficiently in the second half during her limited playing time then, didn't score after intermission. However, she had already done plenty of damage by that time.

Righetti's other shooters did plenty of damage too. They hit from a lot of spots on the floor and they took advantage of their considerable height advantage to get a lot of second, and third, chance points.

"I was happy with the balanced scoring," said Hitch.

"Ashley and Zane (Sheckherd) got their points, and we had a lot of other girls score. We have a lot of threats on the floor."

Sheckherd led Righetti's scoring with 15 points. Reynoso and freshman center Malia Cabigon both ended up with 12. Reserve guard Dominique Garcia made a lot of sharp passes for assists.

As for Santa Ynez coach Mike Alexander, he was plenty happy with his team's second half. The Pirates' Lita Wright popped in 23 of her game high 29 points then.

Malia Loos scored nine points on the night for Santa Ynez, all on 3-pointers.

"That's a tough team, they have a lot of good players and we came out the first half a little intimidated and scared," said Alexander.

"I told our players at halftime, 'Hey, it's all about heart. You can play with these guys. You just have to have heart,' and I think our girls showed that. We out-scored them in the second half."

Both teams substituted liberally. Righetti kept pressing on defense until the fourth quarter. That was fine with Alexander.

"Desiree kept pressing, and I loved that," said Alexander. "We want to go against tough competition like that to get ready."

Alexander said with a chuckle, "I'm going the Ed Torres route," in playing a tough pre-season schedule.

The Friday tournament session at Righetti calls for Hanford Sierra Pacific to play Nipomo at 4:30 p.m. and Righetti to go against Hanford at 6 p.m. Santa Ynez will play Arroyo Grande at 6 p.m. at St. Joseph.

Cupertino 54, Lompoc 43

Adeline Liu scored 21 points, and the Pioneers defeated the Braves in a tournament game at Righetti.

Conny Yang scored 14 points for Cupertino. Juni Monile added 10.

Isabella Robles led Lompoc with 15 points. Danielle Morgan had 14.

Hanford Sierra Pacific 50, San Luis Obispo 43

Because of time considerations, the fourth quarter was not played. A fan needed medical attention in the stands, and the game was stopped for about 30 minutes at the 4:37 mark of the third quarter.

After both teams went to the locker room, medics attended to the spectator, who seemed alert and was talking to medics before being assisted from the gym and put on a stretcher.

The Golden Bears led 43-28 when the game was halted. The Tigers cut into the lead when play resumed, but the Golden Bears held them off.

Sierra Pacific's Haley Bettencourt led all scorers with 21 points. ANika Meyer and Lilly Svetich had 14 and 12 points respectively for San Luis Obispo.       


Sports Reporter