DANVILLE -- The eight-seeded Gunn-Palo Alto High girls basketball team used a swarming, physical defense and just enough offense to upset host and No. 1 seed Monte Vista 45-41 in the second round of the Northern California Division I regional playoffs on Saturday.
After trailing early, Gunn (21-6) started jumping in passing lanes, swiping at balls, and generally hectoring the Mustangs every time they touched the ball. Thanks to that defensive effort, the Titans rushed out to a 21-15 halftime lead.
But Monte Vista (24-6) nibbled away in the third period, and tied things at 40 on a scintillating sequence that saw sharpshooter Amanda Daily give up the ball twice, get it back, and bury a 3-pointer from the left wing while being fouled. She drained the free throw to give the Mustangs their only lead of the second half at 41-40 with just 1:09 left.
It was short-lived. The Titans got the ball to Claire Klausner, who calmly banged home a 3-ball of her own to put Gunn back ahead 43-41 with 46 seconds remaining.
Gunn center Meghan Mahoney led all scorers with 11, and did the dirty work around the basket, gathering 10 rebounds. Monte Vista was led by forward Lily Wissinger, who had 9 points to go with her 8 rebounds.