Rosary Academy of Fullerton will play for its second State girls’ basketball championship in three years March 8 in Sacramento.

The Royals, coached by Richard Yoon, defeated La Jolla Country Day School 62-53 on March 2 at Servite High School to win the CIF Southern California Regional Division I championship, repeating the formula of its semifinal win — coming back after trailing at halftime.

Against La Jolla, Rosary stormed back from a 31-29 intermission deficit to take a seven-point lead into the final stanza, and maintained its edge to win. Senior center Savannah Felix scored 18 points and garnered 14 rebounds for the Royals.

On March 8, Rosary will face Bishop O’Dowd High School of Oakland in the D-I championship game, 6 p.m. at Golden 1 Center in Sacramento. Rosary (26-8) won the CIF-SS 2A, D-III SoCal Regional and State D-3 titles in 2017, while Bishop O’Dowd (24-9) has won three state championships in recent years: D-III in 2012, Open in 2013, and D-3 in 2015.

In boys’ basketball, perennial power Mater Dei was defeated by Sierra Canyon, ranked No. 1 in the U.S. by Maxpreps, 83-73 in the Open Division title game March 2 at Simi Valley High School.

The Monarchs kept pace and trailed by only four after three quarters, but Sierra Canyon tightened its defense to win going away. Sophomores Harrison Hornery and Devin Askew led Mater Dei with 21 and 18 points, respectively, while juniors Aidan Prukop and Ryan Evans each scored 11.

Mike Nelson is the former editor of The Tidings (predecessor of Angelus News).

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