By Nick Giannandrea
McKenna Hsiung's best game of the season helped keep College of the Sequoias' women's basketball team within striking distance of Central Valley Conference leaders heading into a key stretch.
Hsiung, a freshman from Bakersfield High, finished 28 points, five assists and three steals during the Giants' 80-47 victory at West Hills-Lemoore on Jan. 29.
Northern California No. 15-ranked COS (14-8, 3-3) is looking up at state No. 9 Merced (17-5, 6-0), NorCal No, 9 Fresno City (12-9, 4-2) and Reedley (9-13, 4-2) as it pursues a fourth straight conference title and fifth in the past six years.
After playing at Taft (2-19, 0-6) at 6 p.m. Feb. 1, the Giants next three games are at Fresno City (5 p.m. Feb. 5), home against Merced (3 p.m. Feb. 8) and at Reedley (5 p.m. Feb. 12). COS lost to the Rams (76-59), Blue Devils (70-51) and Tigers (68-63) during the first half of CVC play.
Hsiung sank 8 of 13 attempts from 3-point range for the Giants against West Hills-Lemoore (7-15, 3-3).
COS, which used a 24-9 second-quarter blitz to break open a two-point game, also received 12 points, seven rebounds, seven steals and four assists from Serena Ybarra (Coalinga).
The Giants also got eight points, seven assists, four steals and three rebounds from Alaysia Reed (Las Vegas); eight points from Lucy Tazio (El Diamante); seven points and three assists from Clarissa Chavez (Redwood); six points and six rebounds from Sapphire Jones (Hanford) and six points from Neli Diaz (McFarland).