The Eastside Prep girls’ basketball team took down Lowell 49-34 in a Martin Luther King Day showcase on Monday at City College of San Francisco, and the Panthers did it on the boards.
Led by 6-foot, USF-bound senior forward Hashima Carothers, Eastside outrebounded the Cardinals by a 33-14 margin in the nonleague win.
Carothers had 11 rebounds and a game-high 18 points, and the Panthers (12-5) controlled the interior on the offensive end and dictated the shots of the Cardinals (13-5) on defense.
Eastside forwards Alexus Simon and Destiny Graham added nine rebounds apiece and only 11 of the Panthers’ 49 points came outside of the paint.
“They outrebounded us out there and that’s why they won,” Lowell coach Aki Kuwada said. “There were only two real runs in this game. There was the opening [15-5 run] and the [10-0 run] in the third quarter. ... Outside of that, we didn’t play too badly and we did better in the second half.”
Carothers and Graham, who stands 6-3, also wreaked havoc for the Cardinals on offense. Carothers finished with seven blocks and Graham added three more to force Lowell to turn to its outside game. Lowell shot just 29 percent from the field and 15 percent from 3-point range.
“We do what we can out there, especially considering we only have six girls dressed,” Eastside coach Donovan Blythe said. “Our girls did a great job on both ends of the floor and even though we have the twin towers, I’m trying to develop the all-around game of these girls. We’re so quick at the guard position, which made it tough for Lowell.”
No team in the Academic Athletic Association has the size or stature of Eastside and Kuwada used the game as a reminder of what the teams look like at the next level.
“We made a lot of bad decisions,” Kuwada said. “But if we win league and go on to [the] state [tournament], the teams we face are going to have tall girls like that. We aren’t satisfied with just winning league and we’re going to have to practice to beat teams like this. If we get open looks we have to make them and we didn’t today.”
Lowell’s Angie Ng scored nine points and Lorna Tuufuli added six points.