A LOOK AT LODI’S TOP-SCOR­ING THREAT

Lodi News-Sentinel - - FRONT PAGE - By Mike Bush NEWS-SEN­TINEL SPORTS WRITER

Ac­com­plish­ments: Marissa Fabian is com­monly asked one par­tic­u­lar ques­tion that seems to give her celebrity sta­tus.

A four-year starter on the Lodi High girls bas­ket­ball team, Fabian, a guard, shined on the court in three of five games last week that she scored in dou­ble-dig­its. Fabian led the Flames with 12 points against host Edi­son in win­ner’s bracket of the Edi­son Vik­ing Tour­na­ment on Nov. 30. But the host Vikings raced past Lodi 59-34.

In the tour­na­ment opener against Shel­don on Nov. 29, Fabian was one of three Flames who scored in dou­ble fig­ures, with 14 points. That helped Lodi quiet the Huskies 56-36. Fel­low se­niors in for­wards Brooke Aberle (team-high 16 points) and El­lie Van Tas­sel (13 points) were the other con­trib­u­tors.

“We have a lot of peo­ple who can score,” Fabian said. “It’s just fin­ish­ing. I know for me, once I get into the paint, able to fin­ish, or just like the easy, open shots.”

The one time she didn’t score in dou­ble fig­ures was on Satur­day. Lodi (2-6) played St. Fran­cis of Sacra­mento for

third place at the Edi­son Vik­ing Tour­na­ment. Fabian, who’s been play­ing point and shoot­ing guard, scored nine points. St. Fran­cis 63-38 win over the Flames.

“They were re­ally ag­gres­sive,” said Fabian of St. Fran­cis.

Fabian scored only four points for the Flames in a non-league game at Lib­erty Ranch, which ral­lied in the fourth quar­ter for a 50-41 win at The Hawks Next on Nov. 26. The next day, the guard had eight points against Del Oro in a non-league game at The In­ferno. The vis­it­ing Golden Ea­gles, out of Loomis, posted a 53-46 win over the Flames.

Fabian is hav­ing fun in the Flames’ new of­fense, which is the pick-and-roll.

“With our new of­fense, it gives every­one a lot more op­por­tu­nity with the pick-an­droll,” Fabian said. “To get more open looks. This is just me, but more lanes to drive into, to get to the bas­ket. Also dish it down low to the post.”

Lodi coach Bran­don Shea is us­ing Fabian at the point guard po­si­tion to run the Flames’ of­fense. Shea has also used se­nior Cal­ista Morita and ju­niors Ash­lee Toy, Ash­ley Vasquez and Aiyana

Evans, who played as a sopho­more last win­ter.

“I pre­fer to be point guard just be­cause I’m more com­fort­able with that,” Fabian said. “But we have a lot of other girls that can play that po­si­tion. We could all be point guards.”

Although this year’s team has had a rough start, Fabian is more than op­ti­mistic that her and the Flames, who went 16-11 last year, can turn things around be­fore the start of Tri-City Ath­letic League play.

“As long as we can get through the press and play strong de­fense, box out, all of the fun­da­men­tals, I think we have a good chance at try­ing to be back at where we were, but even bet­ter than last year,” Fabian said.

Now the ques­tion Fabian is asked of­ten: Out of the three sports she plays at Lodi High, which one does she en­joy play­ing? The 5-foot-7 Fabian has also been a starter on the Lodi High vol­ley­ball team the last three years, and next spring will wrap up her fi­nal year wear­ing a Lodi High soft­ball uni­form.

“I get asked that a lot,” chuck­led Fabian.

A drum roll please — soft­ball is Fabian’s fa­vorite sport. She has been a starter on the Lodi High var­sity soft­ball team since her sopho­more year, play­ing left field most times.

“Be­tween bas­ket­ball and soft­ball, I’ve been play­ing bas­ket­ball since I was re­ally young,” said Fabian, 18. “But soft­ball is the one taken more se­ri­ously.

That is be­cause dur­ing the sum­mer and fall months in re­cent years, Fabian has played on com­pet­i­tive soft­ball teams. She’s also found time to play on AAU bas­ket­ball teams dur­ing that same time.

Although spring 2019 will mark the end of her prep ca­reer as a Flame, Fabian is hop­ing to con­tinue play­ing soft­ball or bas­ket­ball in col­lege after she grad­u­ates from Lodi High next spring.

MIKE BUSH/NEWS-SEN­TINEL

Lodi guard Marissa Fabian (mid­dle) races Edi­son's Kylie Mur­ray (21) and Jor­dan Thomas (right) in the sec­ond quar­ter of the Edi­son Vik­ing Tour­na­ment on Nov. 30.

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