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Calistoga girls basketball

Junior guard Vanesa Quiepo drives to the basket with a Middletown defender on her hip.

The Gene Duffy Sr. Holiday Classic basketball tournament tips off this week and runs through Saturday at Calistoga High School. The Wildcats boys and girls each will play two games on Wednesday in the round-robin style format before taking Thursday off from play. They’ll get back to action on Friday and will finish tournament play on Saturday. Saturday’s schedule will be set based on results of the first three days of action.

The field of eight teams will be split into two pools. The Calistoga boys are in the Boys Green Pool with North Hills Christian, Morro Bay and Summerfield Waldorf. The Boys White Pool is composed of Roseland Collegiate Prep, Credo, Technology and Redding Christian.

The girls side is also organized into two, four-team pools but with several different entrants. The Calistoga girls team is in the Girls Green Pool with North Hills Christian, Elsie Allen and Morro Bay. The Girls White Pool features Roseland Collegiate Prep, Redding Christian, Technology and Summerfield Waldorf.

Morro Bay cannot attend on Wednesday, which is why the Calistoga boys and girls teams are playing two games on the first day of play and none on the second. The girls play North Hills Christian at 2:30 on Wednesday and will then play Elsie Allen at 5:30. The boys will also open with North Hills Christian at 4 p.m. on Wednesday and will then face Summerfield Waldorf at 7 p.m.

The Wildcats boys won their game at Tomales on Monday and are now 2-3 on the season.

“I do hope for a little more poise, which is getting better; we are playing through to the end,” said co-coach of the boys and girls team, Ray Particelli, on Monday. “We’re not running the white flag early and going all to hell. So I expect a little more character and poise just from what we’ve done so far and then hopefully with that we’ll settle down a little bit. We don’t have many offensive sets in but the basic flow of the offense is in and through four games we do run it better than we did four games ago, so hopefully that’ll continue to improve.”

The girls team is off to an 0-2 start after dropping their game Monday against Tomales. Particelli said he isn’t worried about the slow start.

“The girls having that package of what we did last year, they’ve retained it pretty well,” he said. “I expected them to be rusty but still we’ll be able to change up defenses and run a few more varieties of our offense and that should be enough – if we make a few more baskets – to be competitive, because our defense is solid.”

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Sports Reporter