1. Mater Dei lost in overtime for the second time this season, 76-73 to Gladstone (N.J.) Gill St. Bernard's, the No. 4 team in New Jersey. The Monarchs had a scoring line that would make you ask, "How did they lose?" Xavier Johnson and Stanley Johnson scored 22 and Katin Reinhardt 21, but the rest of the team accounted for only eight points -- seven of them by Elijah Brown. The Monarchs had a four-point lead heading into the fourth quarter. In their other loss, to Arlington (Texas) Grace Prep, they blew an 18-point lead in the second half and lost, 86-80. Monarchs have their biggest Trinity League test on Wednesday when they play host to Orange Lutheran.
2. Four players scored in double figures, led by Nick Thomas' 26, as Capistrano Valley defeated El Toro, 68-50, to continue the momentum heading toward a South Coast League showdown next Wednesday against Mission Viejo. Capo Valley has won 12 of its last 13 games, and plays Aliso Niguel and Dana Hills before getting a chance at the Diablos. Mission Viejo, carrying a 15-game winning streak, plays at Tesoro and El Toro and has a nonleague game against Victor Valley this week. Both teams have lost to Mater Dei, which defeated Mission Viejo 89-53 and Capo Valley 91-55.
3. It's not very often that the Brea Olinda girls' basketball team has a close call with anyone not wearing a Mater Dei uniform or that of a nationally ranked opponent, but the Ladycats had an extremely close call against Anaheim Canyon in the post-Jeff Sink era. The Ladycats were down by two points when Keitra Wallace tied the game with 10 seconds left, 47-47. Brea (10-4) owned overtime on its way to a 60-50 victory. Wallace finished with 28 points, helping new coach Kim Cram-Torres avoid the fallout that would have accompanied the first league loss since 2006 and the second league loss in more than a decade.
4. Speaking of the Mater Dei girls, Jordan Adams is back in the lineup after missing some of the national tournaments in December because of a knee injury. Despite playing without the outstanding point guard, the Monarchs are 13-2. Adams returned to the lineup Saturday and got back in the flow with six points in a 90-12 nonleague victory over Long Beach Jordan.
5. Sunny Hills won its first 17 girls' soccer matches this season, but the streak came to an end Saturday when the Lancers were beaten by Aliso Niguel, 1-0, on the strength of Lauren Benner's goal and Sammy Jo Prud'homme's three saves. The game pitted Orange County's last two undefeated teams. Aliso is 11-0-3.