The Caruthers High girls basketball team beat host St. Bernard’s-Eureka 52-44 Tuesday night to earn a trip to the state Division V championship game.
The Blue Raiders took a 470-mile road trip to reach the Northern California regional final game, looked fresh early and weathered a late storm to lock up their date Friday morning in Sacramento.
Caruthers will play Ramona-Riverside, a 61-43 winner over Anaheim, at 10 a.m. in Golden 1 Center, home of the NBA’s Sacramento Kings.
Caruthers has won three of the last five Central Section D-V championships but hadn’t advanced past the regional second round before this season.
The Blue Raiders (32-4) have won 21 straight since going 2-2 at a New Year’s tournament in Henderson, Nevada. The other two losses came earlier in the season to Los Banos and Roosevelt; there also was a season-opening win over McFarland, which is headed to the state D-III championship game.
Against St. Bernard’s, Caruthers jumped ahead 14-2 after five minutes and led 17-5 at the end of the first quarter, 22-14 at halftime.
When St. Bernard’s got within 37-32, senior Jaque Magana made a jumper. And when it got to 47-42 with 1:10 left, senior Felicia Ramirez converted a three-point play.