One last shot: Girls’ b-ball team finishes strong on senior night

Hallie Faust and

On an emotional night honoring its seniors, the playoff-bound Palo Alto High School girls’ basketball team (11-0) beat the Saratoga Falcons (4-7), 51-40, Monday in the Vikings’ final league game of the season.

The Palo Alto High School girls’ basketball team honors seniors (from left to right) Lauren Daniel, Esme Stotland, Ellie Jeffries, and Annie Niethammer in a short ceremony preceding Mondays 51-40 victory over the Saratoga Falcons. “It’s just been such a fun season, and we’ve had a lot of success,” Jeffries said. “With tonight’s game [in league play], we’re undefeated, which is really amazing.” Photo: Hallie Faust

Sophomore Annika Shah had an early basket in the first quarter, but the Falcons countered with a shot of their own after stealing the ball from the Vikings later on. The quarter ended in a tie, with both teams having 11 points on the scoreboard.

Following an exciting second quarter that left Paly ahead 27-19, the varsity cheer team took to the court for a halftime performance. The team presented its award-winning CCS routine, earning a round of applause from the fans.

The Vikings went on to score 15 more points in the third quarter, increasing their lead against the Falcons. Sophomore Carly Martin stole the ball from the Falcons and raced down the court for a layup, docking another two points for her team.

With four minutes on the clock in the final quarter of the game, senior Lauren Daniels sunk a three-pointer, further adding to the point tally.

The Vikings celebrated senior night, honoring Esme Stotland, Annie Niethammer, Ellie Jeffries and Lauren Daniel. The game began with a short ceremony, where the seniors received flowers and photobooks from their teammates.

“It’s just a lot of fun to always play with this group of girls, so it’s been the best senior season I could ask for,” Jeffries said.

The Palo Alto High School girls’ basketball team shakes hands with the Saratoga Falcons following a close match on Monday night. On Wednesday, the Paly team will attend a meeting where they will be given their upcoming playoff schedule. “We should have a few days of practice to iron some things out,” coach Scott Peters said. Photo: Hallie Faust

The team now looks forward to participating in playoffs, and the Vikings’ perfect record will likely place them in a higher seed than their opponents.

“We’ll go to a playoff seeding meeting on Wednesday, and [that] will determine what division we’re playing in and where,” coach Scott Peters said. “We’re going to face tough competition, so we’ve got to work hard.”