Bishop Diego prepares to receive its runner up trophy. | Credit: Victor Bryant

Ontario, Calif – A determined effort wasn’t enough for the Bishop Diego girls’ basketball team to upset top-seeded Ganesha and claim the CIF-SS Division 5A championship as the Cardinals faded late in 58-35 loss on Saturday afternoon at Colony High School.

The Giants were led by 6’ 3” Division 1 prospect Heavenly Greer, who finished with 19 points and 16 rebounds despite garnering significant attention from the Bishop Diego’s defense.

“I couldn’t be more proud,” said Bishop Diego coach Jeff Burich. “I thought Lily (Simolon) played her ‘you know what’ off. She was all over the place. (Heavenly Greer) is a beast. I haven’t seen a lot of their playoff games, but I think we challenged them as much as anybody else has for quite a long time.”

The Cardinals struggled mightily offensively, but never gave in to the superior size and athleticism of Ganesha. Two freshmen, Simolon and Mileyni Sanchez led the way with six points apiece. 

Senior Julia De La Cruz finished with five points and three assists. Key junior Elliott Redkey contributed four points and three assists

“I think their length prohibited us from attacking the basket,” Burich said. “We’re usually so good at getting inside the lane and drawing fouls.”

Ganesha’s Ra’Nell Harrison led all scorers with 22 points on 10-for-18 shooting from the field. 

The 23-point margin was the closest game that Ganesha has played during the playoffs. Bishop Diego will find out its opponent in the first round of the state tournament on Sunday.


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