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Girls basketball notes: Three standout players suffer season-ending knee injuries

Three Orange County girls basketball standouts have suffered season-ending knee injuries.

Capistrano Valley High senior Leah Manning, San Juan Hills senior Emily Freeman and San Clemente junior Jolie Johnson are among the county players who have been injured early in the spring season.

Manning, a third-team All-County selection last season, suffered a knee injury last week against Dana Hills but will not need surgery, her father Tim said. Her plan is undergo physical therapy for the next 10 to 12 weeks, he said.

Freeman, a senior bound for Irvine Valley College, tore her ACL against Tustin, Stallions coach Paul Edwards said. “Such a heart-breaking scenario for a fantastic, senior kid,” Edwards said of Freeman, who made a school-record 83 3-pointers last season.

Freeman was a fourth-team All-County selection last season and co-MVP of the Sea View League.

Johnson suffered an ACL injury against Rosary and will miss the season, Tritons coach Kerri Husbands said. She helped the Tritons reach the CIF finals last season.

San Clemente junior Riley Brown (knee) also is out for season because of a knee injury from playing beach volleyball in the fall, the coach said.

Orangewood Academy all-league guard Kaila Woo suffered a torn ACL in February, Spartans coach Leslie Aragon said.


JSerra will forfeit the first half of its Trinity League season due to lack of players and “unforeseen circumstances”, the school announced this week.

Second-year coach Geoffrey Clayton said this week the new CIF calendar, the ongoing club season and injuries have left the Lions with a “low” number of players.

JSerra, which has yet to play a game this spring, earlier lost center Ava Carter to a season-ending shoulder injury. Clayton’s freshman daughter, Jailynn, also has been slowed by injury.

“It’s really an unfortunate situation,” Clayton said. “The girls have been working extremely hard for the past year but the pandemic has had an enormous impact on us this year.”

This week. JSerra was scheduled to play Mater Dei on Wednesday and Santa Margarita on Friday.

Please send girls basketball news to Dan Albano at [email protected] or @ocvarsityguy on Twitter

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