In high school boys basketball playoff games:

Westchester High School’s road to the Los Angeles City Section Championship has once again been blocked by a familiar foe.

The Comets were defeated 55-53 by rival Fairfax High School in the city playoff semifinals at the Galen Center Friday, February 22nd.

It was the second-straight season that the Fairfax Lions toppled Westchester’s hopes for a city crown. The Comets handed Fairfax a narrow loss in the last game of the regular season, but the Lions avenged the defeat with the city title on the line.

After the Comets went into halftime trailing 22-18, they fought back to take the lead in the second half and held it for most of the fourth quarter, until Fairfax star center Renardo Sidney took over.

Sidney scored a game-high 32 points, including the game-winning shot, to lead Fairfax to the key victory. The Lions are scheduled to play Taft High School in the city championship game Saturday, March 1st.

Dominique O’Connor and Jarred Dubois each scored 17 points for Westchester (28-4), which has earned a spot in the state tournament.

The Venice High School Gondoliers’ impressive run in the City Section Invitational Division playoffs came to an end in the semifinals with a 53-50 loss to host University High School Friday, February 22nd.

After finishing in a tie for third place in the Western League, the Gondoliers reached the invitational semifinals with victories over Garfield and Reseda high schools.

In the game against University, the Gondos went into halftime tied with the Wildcats at 23-23 but were held to just five points in the third quarter. Venice bounced back with 22 points in the final quarter but it was not enough to stop University.

Isaiah Todd scored 11 points to lead the Gondos, who finished the season with an overall record of 16-15.

In high school girls basketball playoff games:

The Santa Monica High School Vikings’ path to a Southern Section Division IV-AA title ended in the quarterfinals with a 52-49 loss to host Los Osos High School of Rancho Cucamonga Saturday, February 23rd.

The Vikings had picked up 11 consecutive victories, including two convincing playoff wins over Redlands East Valley and Blair High of Pasadena, before falling to Los Osos.

After taking a narrow 25-24 halftime lead against Los Osos, the Vikings held a slight advantage heading into the fourth quarter until Los Osos managed to pull away.

The Santa Monica defense struggled to contain Los Osos center Cierra Warren, who racked up 27 points and grabbed 16 rebounds.

Daisy Feder led the Vikings with 16 points and Karlia Batalla added 11 points.

Santa Monica, which captured back-to-back Ocean League titles this season, finished with an overall record of 24-5.

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