KINGMAN - The Kingman High girls basketball team ended the Pepsi Holiday Tournament Saturday in Flagstaff by finishing third out of 16 teams. The Lady Bulldogs went 3-1 in the tournament, suffering their first loss of the season in the semifinals.
Kingman (12-1) ran into a hot-shooting Valley Christian squad in its only loss, 66-48. The Lady Trojans sank 15 3-pointers, seven more than the eight two-point field goals they made.
Desirae Gonzalez led Kingman with 24 points and Taylor Reed finished with 10.
In the final game for the Lady Bulldogs, they pulled past Flagstaff at the end to earn third place with a 66-62 win. The finish was one of the goals Kingman had for itself playing in the tournament.
"As a team we grew up," said KHS coach Danny Gonzalez. "A goal coming in was to learn how to win the close ones. We did that Monday against Sierra Linda and again with Flagstaff. We learned how to play from behind, play with adversity, and with the lead."
Desirae Gonzalez had a monster game against the Lady Eagles. Gonzalez finished with 38 points. She scored all 12 of Kingman's points in the fourth quarter.
"She was feeling it, and as a team we looked for her," the coach said. "We met some challenges and we stepped up."
In the quarterfinals, the Lady Bulldogs bolted out to a 12-point lead at the end of first quarter, 22-10, and then slowly and methodically built on that to beat Valley, 64-42.
Gonzalez posted a double-double, scoring 26 points and securing 11 rebounds. Reed finished with 23 points, Rachel Arave had 10, and Alison Owen netted five.
In the opening game of the tournament, Kingman breezed past Greyhills Academy, 61-14. Reed led with 17, Gonzalez scored 13 and Owen finished with 11.
Kingman is set to travel again quickly, playing the Lady Knights at 7 p.m. Monday in Lake Havasu.