Lady Bulldogs defeat Lakeside 64-57 to win Metro League Championship

By RayJaun Stelly, The Seattle Medium

With the Metro League championship on the line, the Garfield Bulldogs (13-0) were looking to win the trophy and remain undefeated against Lakeside. Although both teams beat their previous opponents by double digits to qualify, only one team would be crowned league champions this year.

When asked about their state of mind before the game, Garfield head coach Marvin Hall said: “Come on and play our game, don’t make too many adjustments, just do what you want. we do.”

During the first quarter, Garfield’s defense didn’t allow Lakeside to run their offensive sets, which forced turnovers and led to easy points in transition for the Bulldogs. Navaeh Talbert and Katie Fiso carried the scoring charge for the Bulldogs with their ability to shoot 50% from three-pointers combined, facilitate and score on fast breaks during the quarter.

Talbert, who was off the bench for the majority of the season, described his performance as “playing my part and helping my team win”.

The Bulldogs’ defensive pressure gave the Bulldogs a 23-11 lead heading into the second quarter and that momentum continued throughout the game. Lakeside’s offense was limited to one shot per possession, and after grabbing the rebound, Garfield was off to the races for uncontested layups.

Consistency in defense and easy points in attack were Garfield’s theme in the first half, with momentum in their favor they were leading 42-29 before halftime. The Bulldogs, who have yet to meet at halftime in every game this year, were out of phase and started the second half the same way they did the first.

Garfield’s Malia Samuels set the tone with back-to-back layups that energized the Bulldogs as a whole. Samuels scoring energy rubbed off on Imbie Jones who finished it all around the rim, his six rebounds providing second-chance points and helping start the Bulldog offense.

Although Garfield controlled the majority of the game, Lakeside’s effort and energy continued to keep them within striking distance. Forcing poor possessions and holding Garfield to two points in three minutes, the Lions went from 15 at the start of the fourth quarter to just 7 with 1:28 left in regulation. Although their defense held up, Lakeside couldn’t execute offensively which hampered their comeback attempt.

The Bulldogs’ drought ended when Fiso made a short jump. On the next possession, she executed a cross, no-look pass to Jayda Lewis for a score completing her fourth assist. Those two possessions were the icing on the cake, and when the final buzzer sounded, Garfield was victorious.

Asked about her role in tonight’s win, Fiso said: “Distributing the ball and my energy was key, as the game went on I kept my energy on 10.”

Fiso finished with 21 points for the Bulldogs. Talbert finished with 15, while Samuels and Jones each had 10. That group of four combined for 56 of the teams 64 points overall.

Winning 64-57, Garfield beat Lakeside for the Metro League Championship, improving their record to 14-0 and now they will be waiting to see their opponent as they advance through the districts.

pictorial highlights of Garfield vs Lakeside Girls – Metro League Championship

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