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Mahi magic sends Porterville packing

Sat Feb 25, 2023
Elijah Mahi torched Porterville with 28 2nd-half points and a game-high 35

Elijah Mahi torched Porterville with 28 2nd-half points and a game-high 35

In one of the most electrifying individual performances in West Valley's storied playoff history, Elijah Mahi shredded Porterville's defense for 28 second-half points to rally the Vikings past the Pirates 67-60 in CCCAA NorCal playoff action Saturday in Saratoga. The second-round win advances the 5th-seeded Vikings (25-4) to a regional final contest against #13 Las Positas (19-11) Saturday (3/4) at West Valley at 7:00pm.

Saturday night, the Vikings found themselves on the short end of a 30-19 halftime score, thanks to a tenacious Porterville defense and a WVC shooting performance as cold as the weather outside the gym. The Pirates, however, were unprepared for the storm that was rolling in at the start of the second half. They simply had no answer for the Elijah Mahi who took the floor after the break.

Mahi was literally unstoppable in the second half, hitting shot after shot from inside, mid-range and from beyond the arc. He scored West Valley's first seven points of the half and teamed with Jeremiah Dargan, who had five points during the stretch, to pull the Vikings to within 34-32 at the 16:03 mark. A Nick Attanasio three gave WVC a 35-34 lead, its first since it was 5-2. A Dargan dunk off an Ariya Briscoe feed brought the crowd to its feet and extended WVC's lead to 39-34 at 13:42. Mahi continued his personal onslaught a few minutes later, outscoring the Pirates 12-5 by himself from 6:09 to 1:52. Dargan drained a pair of free throws wth :35 left, followed by two from Baron Bracey at :20 and three from Mahi to close it out.

Mahi's second half line showed nine two-pointers, a pair of threes and four free throws; he would finish the night with a career-high 35 points. Dargan was also incendiary in the second half, scoring 12 points, including a pair of Curryesque-distance threes, on his way to 22 for the evening. Julio Phiipps led the 12th-seeded Pirates (17-13) with 18 points, while Cameron Walker finished with 15.