Mark Keppel of Alhambra is one of those schools you don't hear about much for sports. So that's why we liked being able to rank the girls basketball team so high this year. The run ended last week, though, in a playoff loss to Corona Centennial. Two others from last week's Top 20 also are gone.

(After games of March 1; previous rank in parentheses)

1. (1) Lynwood 26-1

The going should get tougher for the Knights starting this week in the CIF Southern Section Div. I-AA semifinals and finals. In last week's games, the defending Div. I state champs got 29 points from Sa'de Wiley-Gatewood in a 81-49 win over A.B. Miller of Fontana plus 25 more from Sa'de in a 74-47 triumph over Millikan of Long Beach.

2. (2) Mitty (San Jose) 26-2

As dominant as the Monarchs have been this season, it's hard to recall that last year they didn't even win the CIF Central Coast Section Div. I crown as they fell in an upset to St. Ignatius of San Francisco. Mitty opened its postseason by routing Milpitas, 74-18.

3. (3) St. Mary's (Stockton) 27-3

Just a little more than two minutes into the Rams' first CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Div. IV playoff game they were already ahead by 22 points. In the second game, St. Mary's crushed Lincoln of Lincoln, 76-29, as Dominique Banks sizzled for 30 points. It will be an upset of mythic proportions if St. Mary's doesn't win its section title.

4. (4) Narbonne (Harbor City) 21-6

The Gauchos stormed into the CIF L.A. City Section title game after easy wins of 73-29 over Jordan and 77-43 over Chatsworth. Camille LeNoir had 26 in the first game and 19 in the second. In the final, Narbonne will meet Sylmar, which impressed in its semifinal game with a 61-29 win over Carson. That's a team Narbonne defeated by 76-49 the last time they played, so maybe the Sylmar game won't be that much of a romp.

5. (5) Poly (Long Beach) 27-2

They've got quite a jewel at Poly in Judith Smith. The junior guard had 21 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists in last week's 65-37 victory over Temecula Valley in the CIFSS Div. I-AA quarterfinals. Natasha Gray added 19 points and 10 rebounds. The Jackrabbits could be playing Lynwood this weekend.

6. (6) Redondo (Redondo Beach) 25-4

They're already in the final round of the CIFSS Div. II-A playoffs and it'll be the Seahawks facing Mater Dei of Santa Ana. No matter what happens in that game, Redondo will be playing in next week's Southern Regionals. In last week's games, Redondo had some trouble against El Modena of Orange in a 48-43 win, but earlier had no trouble against Canyon of Anaheim, 63-30.

7. (9) La Jolla Country Day (La Jolla) 23-4

Candice Wiggins was cleared medically to play this week and should be fine for an expected CIF San Diego Section Div. IV title game matchup vs. Bishop's of La Jolla. The Torreys moved up two spots in this week's top 20 thanks to previous No. 8 Mark Keppel and previous No. 9 Brea-Olinda both going out in the Southern Section playoffs.

8. (11) Pinewood (Los Altos Hills) 18-4

It wasn't that long ago that the Panthers were hanging around in the No. 15 range of these rankings. A big win over Ursuline and several upsets later, now look at where they are. Pinewood won its first game of the CCS Div. II playoffs, 67-23, over North Salinas of Salinas (good, now Monica Abbott can start pitching for the softball team).

9. (12) Bishop Montgomery (Torrance) 22-7

Noelle Quinn's candidacy to be Ms. Basketball State Player of the Year got stronger with two huge outings last week. First, in a 81-48 win over La Canada, Quinn had 25 points and seven steals. Then in a 56-42 victory over Rosary of Fullerton, Quinn had 29 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists. That put the Knights into the CIFSS Div. III-A final opposite a familiar foe: Bishop Amat. The Knights had to go into overtime before they could finally get past the Lancers the last time they played.

10. (13) San Clemente 25-3

The Tritons could be playing Hart of Newhall for the second straight year in the CIFSS Div. I-A finals. San Clemente moved into this week's semis with wins of 67-39 over Temescal Canyon of Lake Elsinore and 48-45 over Saugus. Lindsey Pluimer had 30 points, eight rebounds and eight blocks against Temescal.

11. (13) Ursuline (Santa Rosa) 26-2

The Bears will be seeded No. 1 in this week's NCS Div. IV playoffs, but considering that the No. 8 seed, St. Patrick-St. Vincent of Vallejo, just lost by only 13 to Piedmont, that position might not guarantee much. Ursuline ended its regular season with league playoffs and won, 63-34, vs. Maria Carrillo of Santa Rosa and, 53-27, vs. Montgomery of Santa Rosa.

12. (14) Piedmont 25-3

Coach Bryan Gardere's team didn't get a chance to avenge its recent loss to St. Mary's of Berkeley in last week's Bay Shore Athletic League playoffs because St. Mary's got knocked off earlier. Piedmont won the crown with a 62-49 win over St. Patrick-St. Vincent. Courtney Paris had 21 points and 14 rebounds. Sister Ashley Paris scored 30 in a win earlier in the week vs. Salesian of Richmond.

13. (16) Troy (Fullerton) 26-2

The Warriors get to move up three spots this week since previous No. 15 Long Beach Wilson also lost in addition to Keppel and Brea. Troy is playing Perris in this week's CIFSS Div. II-AA title game. In a 57-42 victory over J.W. North of Riverside last Saturday, Amanda Livingston lived it up for 24 points and eight rebounds.

14. (17) San Diego 27-3*

Hey, somebody tell us how many 100-point games the Cavers have this season. San Diego added two more to the total last week in the San Diego Section Div. I playoffs: 107-37 over Calexico and 103-52 over La Costa Canyon. Charde Houston, who could be the section player of the year even ahead of Candice Wiggins, was smokin' with 53 points and 12 rebounds vs. Calexico. Houston then posted 39 points vs. LCC.

15. (18) Bishop Amat (La Puente) 28-4

If Jessica Carrera can keep nailing the three-point shot, the Lancers just might be able to get past their nemesis, Bishop Montgomery, in this week's CIFSS Div. III-A final. Erin Myrick had a big game last week, too, with 30 points in a 60-54 victory over Chaminade of West Hills.

16. (19) Santa Margarita (Rancho SM) 25-4

Mater Dei's strong showing in the CIFSS Div. II-A playoffs also makes the Eagles look stronger since they beat Mater Dei twice in the Serra League. Santa Margarita is in the CIFSS Div. III-AA final opposite Artesia of Lakewood. The Eagles had to scratch to advance as they won in overtime, 67-59, over Pacifica of Garden Grove.

17. (20) Madera 24-1

The Coyotes moved into the CIF Central Section Div. I semis with a 63-37 triumph over Bakersfield. Heather Bates was held slightly below her scoring average at 18 points, but teammate Dasha Williams darted around enough to score 16 to pick up the slack.

18. (nr) Hart (Newhall) 23-5

When you think of the Indians, you think of sophomore phenom Ashlee Trebilcock. Lately, though, it's been Amanda Patton who's been scoring the most. Patton had 26 points last week in a 71-31 romp of Los Alamitos and scored a team-high 20 as Hart beat Warren of Downey, 62-30.

19. (nr) Eisenhower (Rialto) 25-4

One of the best games in the state last week was the Eagles' 54-52 win over Ayala of Chino Hills in the CIFSS Div. I-AA quarterfinals. Laura Dinkins led Ike with 17 points. As it turned out, the winner also gained a spot in this week's top 20.

20. (nr) Palmdale 25-5

Maybe Berkeley could have gone in here instead, but Palmdale did beat a ranked team as the Falcons knocked off previous No. 15 in the state Long Beach Wilson, 57-54, in the CIFSS Div. I-AA quarterfinals. Meka Nixon scored 30 for Wilson, but Palmdale's depth and toughness prevailed.

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