Girls of Summer: Port City wins

Former Stockton McNair coach Anthony Matthews uses abundance of slashing, dashing and talented guards to win Gold Division title at Stockton Summer Classic.

For top players that turned heads the most in the Platinum Division of the Stockton Summer Classic and for first post in annual Girls of Summer statewide tour, CLICK HERE.

There was no championship in the Platinum Division but in the Gold Division of the Stockton Summer Classic it was Port City out of Stockton beating Orinda Magic on Saturday and then again on Sunday in the title game.

Port City is a first-year club program with more boys than girls, but since its director is former Stockton McNair girls head coach and current Delta College women’s assistant Anthony Matthews, he decided to start a girls elite team.

The team is lacking a post but the squad of slick and quick guards, with eight of the 10 girls from the class of 2017, played at a pace that wore everyone down in the Gold Division.

Head coach Stephen Pezzola from Salesian of Richmond also coaches for Orinda Magic. Photo: Willie Eashman.

Head coach Stephen Pezzola from Salesian of Richmond also coaches for Orinda Magic. Photo: Willie Eashman.

In the first game against Orinda Magic, it took three overtimes to secure the win, but in the title game the Port City girls ran off to a 54-39 victory.

Shayleen “Shay” Stark, a high-flying 2017 point guard from McNair, is the ringleader.

“Shay can beat anyone off the dribble,” Matthews remarked. “She’s a slasher that can get to the rack but she also can step back and make the three, plus she’s a great passer.”

The three-point specialist for Port City is 2016 guard Talisa Rivera, a transfer to Lodi from Stockton St. Mary’s. She had at least three 3-pointers in each game and six in the first game against Orinda Magic. Another flashy guard who Matthews says is playing well is Brentwood Liberty 2017 Kai Bohannon. Matthews also wanted to be sure 2017 Lodi guard Monica Valenzuela got some kudos for her play.

Orinda Magic had the best player in the Gold Division in rising 2018 star guard Lesila Finau of Dublin. The impressive performance at the Queens Court event by Finau continued as she had 20 of the team’s 39 points in the title game and averaged 16 points, six rebounds, three assists and three steals for the five games the Magic played.

“Lesila is starting to look for lanes and her outside shots are beginning to fall,” said Magic coach and Salesian (Richmond) head coach Stephen Pezzola. “She has long arms, has good timing, and get up off the ground.”

Another Magic player, JulieAnn Martin, a 2016 two guard who also plays for Pezzola at Salesian, is showing great improvement to begin the summer as well. She had 18 points in each of the first two games on Sunday.

“JulieAnn just has a nose for the ball, averaged at least four-five steals last weekend,” Pezzola remarked. “She developing an ability to stop and pop and she’s starting to really shoot well.”

A rising incoming Salesian senior who played well for the Magic was guard Rayanna Ross. “She’s the loose ball queen,” Pezzola said.

Another girl that showed well and gave Orinda Magic an inside presence in the paint and on the boards was 2016 San Francisco International power forward Jasmine Sorrels.

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