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High school girls basketball: Clutch steal by Carsyn Stephenson seals quarterfinal win for Highland

SALT LAKE CITY — Highland is heading to the semifinals.

The Rams gutted out a tough fourth quarter to beat Salem Hills 34-30.

“I’m just really proud of the girls and a hard-fought win. These girls, they make plays, they grind things out and they just believe. I’m really proud of them for all of their efforts and hard work and what they do. Amazing young ladies,” Highland head coach Kurt Schneider said.

Lei Makaui scored 13 points to lead the Rams, while Kaija Glasker added 11 points and Sosefina Langi chipped in 10 points. Brooke Vance scored 14 to lead Salem Hills.

The Rams survived a late-game scare from the Skyhawks as Carsyn Stephenson stole the ball from Salem Hills late in the fourth quarter to seal the victory.

“I just told them to turn the page when they hit a couple of threes. I said, ‘Turn the page, we got this, don’t worry about it, just keep on playing like you’ve been — playing good defense and it will all work out,’” Schneider said.

Along with her 13 points, Makaui had three rebounds and one steal.

“I think at the end it said it all when I just gave her a hug. She’s so improved this year. She’s started off where she struggled shooting and now she’s got confidence as she steps up and knocks down shots and hit those free throws that were huge at the end,” Schneider said.

Highland will play Mountain View in the semifinals on Thursday at 4:40 p.m. at the Huntsman Center.