APTOS—The Aptos High girls’ basketball team is on its way to compete in the Central Coast Section playoffs after securing an at-large bid in Wednesday’s seeding meeting.
It’s been a week since the Mariners last played and it’ll be an extra five days before the Division III quarterfinals comes around. But, Aptos coach Bruce Funk said they’ll continue to practice hard and they’re just excited to be able to extend the season.
“They hope to make a nice run in CCS,” he said.
Joining them will be some familiar faces from the Santa Cruz Coast Athletic League including league champion Santa Cruz High and co-runner-up Soquel High.
All three teams have byes in the first two rounds. They won’t see any action until the quarterfinals on Feb. 22 and they will open the playoffs at home.
Funk said having three teams from the same league competing in the same CCS division shows that the SCCAL continues to gather respect.
“We have three D-III teams in there and the fact that we have three out of the top four spots shows what kind of basketball we play on the coast,” he said.
The winner of Friday night’s first round game between Sobrato (13-8) and 12 Jefferson (15-8) plays at No. 5 Saratoga (9-12) on Saturday.
The Mariners, (15-9), who earned the No. 4 seed, will host Saturday’s winner on Tuesday at 5:30pm.
Funk said he didn’t get a chance to watch any of those three teams in person, however, they have plenty of game film on all of them. He also mentioned that they’ll wait until Saturday to watch who plays in that game.
“And then whoever we face we’ll start planning on Sunday and Monday to get ready for them on Tuesday,” Funk said.
Friday’s winner between Del Mar (8-14) and No. 10 Greenfield (18-6) plays at No. 7 El Camino (15-9) on Saturday. No. 2 Santa Cruz (11-10) hosts Saturday’s winner on Tuesday at 7pm.
Friday’s winner between King City (12-6) and No. 11 Monterey (11-10) plays at No. 6 Mills (10-11) on Saturday. No. 3 Soquel (13-9) hosts Saturday’s winner on Tuesday at 7pm.
There’s a chance the Mariners could have a possible rematch with either Soquel or Santa Cruz. Funk said it’ll be much more exciting because that means they’ll have reached the championship game.
“If we do get a rematch that means we’ve been playing really, really well and it would be great to have two teams playing for the title from our league,” he said.
The Open Division Championship will be played at Kaiser Permanente Arena — home of the NBA G League’s Santa Cruz Warriors — on Feb. 25. Open Division qualifiers are No. 1. Archbishop Mitty (23-1), No. 2. St. Ignatius (16-7), No. 3. Pinewood (19-1), No. 4. Valley Christian (18-6), No. 5. Saint Francis (16-6), 6. Sacred Heart Cathedral (9-11), No. 7. Palo Alto (20-2) and No. 8. Half Moon Bay (20-4).
D-III: TBD at No. 4 Aptos (15-9), 5:30pm