Sobrato staves off Gilroy rally to win season opener, 50-43

Gilroy Mustangs

Gilroy didn’t have a bad first half of basketball, it’s just that Sobrato’s second quarter was that much better.
The Bulldogs scored 19 points in the second quarter and kept the pressure going into the third quarter to pull out a 50-43 win to officially open the season.
“I think it took them a quarter or two to really open up and start vibing with each other and get the chemistry,” said Sobrato coach Erica Wallace. “I’m impressed. We have a bunch of youngsters and they were a little nervous in the first quarter, but they came through.”
Adina Valencia led all shooters with 20 point for Gilroy, including eight in the fourth quarter during a stretch where the Mustangs nearly stole the game.
“She always brings her game. She’s been a great player for us for the last three years and we’re hoping that she’ll take that leadership spot and keep going in tight game like this.”
Trailing by 14 after three, Gilroy went on a 11-1 scoring run through the first half of the quarter and pulled to within four of Sobrato.
But finally, turnovers and a tenacious Bulldog defense slowed the comeback down.
“We made some adjustments and I thought the adjustments help. Once we adjusted and figured some things out, we did a little better,” said Gilroy coach Mitchell Pierce. “Turnovers definitely a major factor in this. If we kept that down, I thought we would have had a chance to tie this up.”
Valencia and Jackie Morales both hit 3s in the quarter to help put a scare into the Bulldogs.
“I thought it was a good first game. They showed their spirit to battle back and stay in it. We’re working, but we’re going to keep working,” Pierce said.
However, Vanessa Gonzalez broke the streak and scored all nine of Sobrato’s fourth quarter points to put the game away.
Gonzalez hit a key 3 to break the 11-1 scoring run and put the lead back to seven.
She finished with 18 for the game, with Megan Yabumoto putting up 19, including five 3-pointers.
“She’s very dependable and now that she’s a senior, she’s making some great decisions. She’s understanding her body better and how to use her body,” Wallace said.
Yabumoto had a trio of treys in the third quarter to help push Sobrato to a 41-27 lead.
“She’s getting into her little chemistry and flow too,” Wallace said.
Gilroy controlled the tempo at the start of the game, going up 10-9 in the first quarter.
Valencia had six points and Sarah Wiehe added four.
Wiehe finished with nine points for the game.
Gilroy now goes straight into the Mustang Classic where the girls will take on Christopher to open things up 8 p.m. Thursday.
Coach Pierce said the whole team—from coaches on down—need to continue to work hard and improve and take quality steps toward getting better this season.
“After tonight we have three more and we do have Christopher. It’s a great game for the town,” Pierce said. “I always look forward to playing Christopher, the rival. Some of these girls’ close friends go to Christopher. So we’re looking forward to it. But like any game, we’ve got to work hard and execute.”