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No. 3 Sequoias topples Vaqueros, 88-60

Aaliyah Pauling, a 5-10 freshman guard from Spokane, Wash., scored 12 of her 14 points in the first half. (Photo by Ken Sciallo / Sevilla Photography)
Aaliyah Pauling, a 5-10 freshman guard from Spokane, Wash., scored 12 of her 14 points in the first half. (Photo by Ken Sciallo / Sevilla Photography)

College of the Sequoias used a 50-32 second-half advantage to down SBCC 88-60 on Thursday night at the Hancock Toys for Tots women's basketball tournament in Santa Maria.

Zharia McCollum led the unbeaten and third-ranked Giants (12-0) with 21 points. Sequoias led 38-28 at the half.

Aaliyah Pauling scored 12 first-half points and topped the Vaqueros (3-4) with 14 points, five rebounds and three steals. Holly Barrera added 12 points (all in the second half) and six rebounds. Sophia Torres hit 6-of-9 off the bench and finished with a season-high 12 points and four rebounds.

The Vaqueros committed 35 turnovers and Sequoias had just 14. SBCC struggled from the free-throw line, making 37.5 percent (12-32) while the Giants hit 68.4 percent (12-19).

"We played a great game and cut the deficit to eight late in the third quarter," said coach Sandrine Krul. "Sequoias is a very good team. We competed all the way and everyone got minutes against a very strong and authentic 12-0 team. That's only going to make us better."

SBCC trimmed a 16-point deficit to eight (51-43) on a 3-pointer by Barrera with 3:38 to go in the third period. Then the Giants took control with a 16-3 run to stretch the lead to 21 (67-46) entering the final period.

The Vaqueros will take on Orange Coast in the consolation semifinals on Friday at 3 p.m.