Cathedral girls turn tables on Bonita Vista to win Open Division

Cathedral Catholic High’s Isuneh “Ice” Brady blocks Bonita Vista High’s Kaylyn Buchanon-lamb
Cathedral’s Isuneh “Ice” Brady blocks Bonita Vista’s Kaylyn Buchanan-Lamb in Open Division basketball title game Saturday.
(Kristian Carreon / For The San Diego Union-Tribune)

Torrey Pines wins boys Open title on buzzer-beating 3-pointer by Nick Herrmann


One of the hardest things in sports is for one good team to beat another three times in a season.

Saturday evening at Montgomery High, Bonita Vista — winner of two games earlier this season with Cathedral Catholic — fell six points short of a season sweep, losing to the Dons 55-49 in the Girls Open Division championship game.

“It was about confidence, it was about playing as a team, it was about finding a way,” said Cathedral Catholic coach Jackie Turpin, whose Dons lost 69-58 and 75-70 earlier this season to the Barons.

Second-seeded Bonita Vista (24-4) — ranked No. 10 in the state — led by 19 early in the second quarter, but top-seeded Cathedral Catholic (19-3) — ranked No. 7 in the state — had the deficit down to four by the half and led by one at the end of three quarters.

The fourth quarter was a frenetic, high-energy eight minutes with five lead changes and four ties.

With the scored tied at 48, Cathedral Catholic’s UConn commit Isuneh “Ice” Brady came up big, scoring back-to-back baskets with 1:01 and 25 seconds to play as Bonita turned the ball over twice.

“Those were some big buckets,” Brady said. “My teammates did a good job getting me the ball in the right spots, and I was able to finish.”

Brady led the Dons with 16 points and 10 rebounds.

Alyssa Garcia added 13 points and Taryn Johnson, who had the game’s last basket, finished with 12 points.

Izzy Navarro had but three points, but grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds.

“Bonita Vista came out swinging,” Turpin said. “But our defense kept us in it. We know how good they are, and we knew they’d come at us.”

Because of COVID-19 protocols, the CIF was only allowed to sell 200 tickets per team.

But the gym was loud, and the fans were animated.

“We’ve been in a lot of quiet gyms this season,” Turpin said. “This was a great atmosphere. It felt like high school basketball again. We were able to keep our composure late. That shows our growth. We weren’t able to do that early in the season. We’re a better-connected team now.”

Bonita Vista senior Sylena Peterson, who has signed with New Mexico State, led all scorers with 19 points and she grabbed five rebounds.

Julia Costlan had 10 points, including a pair of 3-pointers in the Barons’ hot, first-quarter start.

Sophomore Madison Canon played tough against the 6-foot-3 Brady, grabbing nine rebounds. Keke Grayson, a 6-3 senior, had four rebounds when Canon came out.

“Bonita Vista is a physical team, and we knew that,” Brady said. “I knew what to expect. I knew they’d play me tough. I had to finish around the basket, push my teammates.

“All the hard work paid off, though. We’re champions. It feels great. It means everything.”

Both teams advance to the Southern California Regional playoffs.

— John Maffei is a reporter for The San Diego Union-Tribune