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NORWALK – It may not have been as big an undertaking as David taking down Goliath, but the Chabot College women's basketball team completed a monumental task on Sunday in defeating Mt. San Antonio College, 63-58, to win the college's first women's basketball state title.
Chabot (31-3) was playing in its first-ever state championship game but handled it like a veteran squad, jumping out to an early 11-point lead (16-5) over the state's only undefeated team. That lead didn't last long as Mt. San Antonio (34-1) closed the first half with a 10-0 run to take a 32-28 lead into the locker room at halftime.
That four point spread would be the largest advantage for either team of the second half as the teams exchanged leads throughout the period which included four ties. The first tie came at 43-43 with 12:20 to play and the final tie at 58-58 with 1:35 to go. Michelle Townsend's 3-point basket with a minute to play gave Chabot a 61-58 lead and her two free throws in the final second iced the victory for the Gladiators.
Although it was Chabot's first time in the state championship, Mt. San Antonio was accustomed to the stage. The Mounties have won six state championships, one shy of tying the state record, and have been state runners-up twice before this year. There have been five undefeated state champions in women's basketball history, including the 2013 Mt. San Antonio team which went 34-0. But the Gladiators didn't want to be the "other team" in the history books this year.
Mt. San Antonio's historical success, plus the fact that only one Northern California region team has won the state title in the previous 15 years, made the task look enormous for Chabot. However, no one told freshman point guard Morgan Green or sophomore guard Alana Simon that the task was too large. The pair combined for 43 of their team's 63 points and 13 rebounds while Townsend added 15 points and a team-high 11 rebound.
Green was named as the state tournament MVP with 26 points in the championship game while both Simon (17 points, 8 rebounds) and Townsend were also named to the state tournament team. Sashanique Youngblood and John'ea Thompson each earned state tournament honors for Mt. San Antonio while Olivia Ochoa earned state tournament honors for East Los Angeles College.
CCCAA stats and stories provided by the California Community College Sports Information Association.