Four-year varsity standout on Oakdale High’s girls basketball team, Cassandra Clark, could be done for the season after a devastating injury to her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in a tough loss to Weston Ranch this past week.
The talented scorer and year-round basketball star will find out if she needs surgery this week, but Mustang coach Gary Smith said his leading scorer could be done for the season.
“She is an athlete who has always been extremely coachable and everyone knew how badly she wanted to compete in her senior year,” Smith said. “Unfortunately that’s just the way the game goes some times, but Cassandra is the kind of person who can bounce back.”
The injury is a huge blow to an already decimated Oakdale line-up that is still without injured Kelsey Clark, Naydee Fernandez and Ashley Edwards.
Edwards is expected to return soon, but Valley Oak League wins would have been tough to nab even with Oakdale’s four missing starters present in the lineup.
That fact was certainly evident in Oakdale’s first two games of league play.
Oakdale (6-5 overall) had Cassandra Clark for only two full quarters in a 57-32 loss to Weston Ranch (7-6) on Jan. 4. Two days later, they battled to a 45-44 overtime win against Kimball (0-15).
“Especially with Cassandra going down, we are going to need some kind of positive leadership from this group,” Smith said. “I am just hoping we can get healthy by the time the second half of league rolls around and hopefully have something to say about the league outcome.”
Cassandra Clark’s 19 points paced Oakdale against Weston Ranch, while Andreina Rodriguez chipped in six.
Rodriguez (17 points) and Blanca Lara each collected season highs in the one-point win over Kimball that saw a tie at the end of regulation. Lara scored two of her 19 points with a big field goal in the final moments, and added a 3-for-4 overtime free throw percentage to seal the win. Lara was an impressive 9-for-12 from the foul line.
“Blanca had an excellent game against Kimball,” Smith said. “She was terrific outside while Andreina once again carried the load inside for us.”
Oakdale hosts Sierra (11-3) today.
The JV girls beat visiting Kimball, 30-12, after big production from a pair of freshman pull-ups who stepped in to replace a sophomore pulled up to the varsity level.
The team saw seven steals and four points from freshman Hanna Holland and another 12 points and three rebounds from freshman Sommer Anderson. Francesca Orvis chipped in eight points and five rebounds as well.
“We are learning to play together and trust each other and I expect to keep improving,” Oakdale coach Heather Brown said. “We played with much more control in our second VOL game.”
Oakdale’s first league game was a 48-16 loss to Weston Ranch. Orvis scored six points with eight rebounds while Holland (three steals, two points) and Kylie Gust (11 rebounds, two points) also played well.