Centaur Girls Of To Fast Start Seven Wins In First 10 Games


December 24, 2009

At this point in the season, Culver City High girls’ basketball coach Jack Nakanishi is pleased about how his team is playing.

The Centaurs are 7-3 and won their last two games last week before taking a break. Culver City didn’t play this week but resumes next week in the Beverly Hills tournament.

“We’ve been pretty consistent,” Nakanishi said. “Our offense has struggled at times, but that’s mainly because our shooting percentage is down. But I expect that to pick up.”

Culver City lost its opening game, then won five in a row before losing two in a row. Then the Centaurs defeated Pacifica of Garden Grove and Fountain Valley in the Ocean View tournament.

The Centaurs are shooting just 36 percent overall, including 21 percent from three-point range, but those numbers compare with last season, when Culver City shot 34 percent overall and 26 percent from three-point range.

Senior guard Alex Lewis leads Culver City in scoring, averaging 16.3 points per game while shooting 44 percent from the floor. Senior forward Savannah Erskine is averaging 12.9 points per game while shooting 41 percent. Erskine also leads the team in assists, averaging 4.8 per game.

But those two are the only players for Culver City averaging double-figures in scoring, and together they account for about half of the Centaurs’ 57 points per game.

“Alex and Savannah are playing well, but we will need a little more production from some of the other players,” Nakanishi said. “Other players are beginning to step up. Alex Statuzenbach, Arian Tolbert and Kristen Holt are improving.”

Statuzenbach is averaging 6.3 points per game, Tolbert is averaging 5.3 and Holt 7.1.

Sophomore center Lunden Junious, the Centaurs’ tallest player at 5-foot-11, is leading the team in rebounding, averaging 4.9 per game, and is one of the players that will be key for Culver City, Nakanishi said.

“She’s been in and out of the lineup, but we’re going to need her to step up here game,” he said.

Kristyn Kitibayashi, Taylor Tanita and Cindy Kaoud are key players off the bench, Nakanishi said.

“We don’t have a lot of height, but we have fairly quick players,” Nakanishi said. “We’re playing pretty good basketball right now.”


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