The Dublin High School Boys and Girls Basketball teams battled familiar East Bay Athletic League opponents in their final North Coast Section contests, with the Girls traveling to face the #1 seed Monte Vista Mustangs in the Semifinals while the Boys hosted the Granada Matadors in an Open Division Consolation matchup.
Despite losing 66-33 to the Mustangs in the EBAL Tournament, the 12th-seeded Gaels put up a much stronger fight in their NCS encounter before falling to Monte Vista 47-33. Dublin’s trademark defense stood out throughout the night, keeping the Gaels competitive against one of the Bay Area’s top teams.
On the Boys side, Dublin and Granada traded the lead throughout the night until the Matadors were able to pull away in the final minutes to claim a 54-50 victory over the Gaels. It was a much better showing for Dublin against a Granada squad which defeated the Gaels 61-52 less than two weeks ago in the EBAL semifinals.
By qualifying for the NCS Open Division, the Boys team has automatically qualified for a berth in the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) Tournament that starts on March 1st. Dublin will likely be placed into the Division 1 bracket and is still hoping for one of the top 8 seeds and an opportunity to host at least one home game.
With the advent of the Open Division for Divisions 1-3, the Girls team is no longer guaranteed an automatic position in the CIF Tournament despite previous reports to the contrary. In previous years, NCS semifinalists were guaranteed berths into CIF but that is no longer the case as the extra bids allotted to the NCS by the CIF are given to Open Division participants. Dublin is still eligible to be considered for one of the final at-large berths, but will need to be considered amongst higher seeded teams in Divisions 1-3 so being selected may be difficult.
Brackets will be released by the CIF on the evening of Sunday, February 27th at www.cifstate.org.