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Successful day one ends in win for Pitman girls basketball
Kaylin Randhawa keeps the ball out of her Ceres opponent's hands during the Pitman Holiday Classic tournament that was sponsored by the Kiwanis of Greater Turlock. The Pride beat Ceres 71-58. - photo by CANDY PADILLA/ The Journal

Round one of the Kiwanis of Greater Turlock Pitman Holiday Classic was exactly how the Pitman Pride girls’ basketball team wanted to kickoff their tournament.

The Pride hosted the Ceres Bulldogs on Wednesday and the team could not have been happier with the result after cruising into a 71-58 victory.

“Offensively it was our best performance of the year so far,” said Pitman head coach Dustin Curtiss. “We did a good job of pushing the ball and getting easy buckets, defensively we had moments where we looked really good and then some other moments when we had some lapses.”

Pitman allowed just six points in the first quarter then allowed Ceres to get back into the mix after scoring 20 in the second.

The halftime score read 37-26 in favor of Pitman,who didn't let Ceres come within 10 points for the remainder of the game.

“We obviously had a great first but not so good in the second,” said Curtiss. “Goal wise, the girls set scoring goals and stuff like that and obviously they didn't meet that goal defensively but offensively they met some goals so that's good.”

Some of those goals meant big contribution from some of the top players, including senior Cerah Moren, who finished with a game-high 19 points for the Pride. Kaylin Randhawa followed with 15 points and Olivia Salafia added 11 points.

“I thought Kaylin and Cerah looked really fresh coming off break and I thought they had a lot of energy and their speed was a problem for Ceres,” said Curtiss. “Cerah is really fast and Kaylin with the ball she is quick; they got us to push the ball really well and got us some easy buckets.”

The high percentage shots seemed to just flow for the Pride who came out flying in the third. Moren, Randhawa and Salafia combined for 13 of the Prides 22 points in the third quarter.

 “That all got confidence going and everything flowing in a smooth way,” said Curtiss. “Obviously there are things we want to work on and big coaching points we want to get into, but our up and down at the start it was the new pieces trying to figure out everything, but obviously this was a good game.”

Pitman started the year 1-4 before redeeming themselves and currently boast a 6-7 overall record after 13 games, going 5-3 during that span.

“Early on in the season it looked like we were trying to find a rhythm and that got us our 1-4 start that was as sign where we went up and down, but now I feel like we are getting into that rhythm,” said Curtiss. “Everybody is starting to understand their roles and that can make us dangerous once league rolls around.”