Dejah Saldivar breaks girls’ state record for most threes in a game

It made no sense.

On Thursday, the Ontario Christian girls’ basketball team (18-2) had one of their worst practices of the season. No problem. Came late to the movie. Lazy, as coach Matt Tumambing put it. He sent her running for about an hour and a half.

Heading into a Friday night matchup against Temecula’s Linfield Christian, junior Dejah Saldivar’s legs should have been dead. And they pretty much were.

Except that she didn’t miss a single shot during the warm-up.

“I said, ‘OK, that’s a good sign,'” Tumambing said. “‘Let’s fire away.'”

Saldivar did so 31 times in a 115-30 win over Linfield Christian. By the time the dust settled, she had hit 17 three-pointers, breaking the state girls’ basketball record for most three-pointers in a single game, according to Cal-Hi Sports. She scored 51 points that night.

“I had no indication that she would live like that tonight,” Tumambing said.

Saldivar didn’t suddenly inherit Kevin Durant’s basketball powers Friday like she was the kid from Thunderstruck, Tumambing called the 5-foot-5 junior “one of the best shooters in the country” earlier in the season, and Saldivar is now seated at the top nation in three-point marks this season, per MaxPreps.

You know your role, said your coach. Saldivar has had 231 three-pointers and exactly eight two-pointers this season. She’s become the perfect match-up for University of Washington’s Chloe Briggs, who is a triple-double machine averaging 26.6 points per game. Anyone helping Saldivar to try and contain one of Briggs’ drives – Toast.

“Shooting a three for her is like a layup for other girls,” Tumambing said of Saldivar, who is shooting from deep with a 42% clip the season.

Saldivar only made five in the first half against Linfield Christian. She had earned only eight or three quarters. And after erasing Ontario Christian’s school record with about three minutes remaining, she recalled, her coaches kept yelling at her to shoot.

She missed three in a row.

That’s itShe thought. it’s over.

But her teammates force-fed her, and Saldivar injected five in a row to end the night and topple the record, cementing her name in the record books as one of the best shooters in state history.

Hours later, she still sounded amazed on the phone.

“I feel,” she said, “on top of the world.”

https://www.latimes.com/sports/highschool/story/2023-01-14/ontario-christian-dejah-saldivar-sets-state-record-three-pointers Dejah Saldivar breaks girls’ state record for most threes in a game

Emma Bowman

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