The Indians trailed 8-4 twominutes into the game, but Poly (34-1), which faces second-seeded A.B. Miller of Fontana in the regional final at 6p.m. Saturday at Pauley Pavilion, scored the next 11 points over a three-minute span. Candice Nichols scored 10 of her 14 points in the quarter for the Jackrabbits, who forced 13turnovers and limited Hart to 1-of-4 shooting. “That’s the best our starting five has played the whole season,” Poly coach Carl Buggs said. “This is a big win because they’re a great team. But it will feel much better winning the state. That’s our goal.” The Indians, who received 13points from Oregon-bound senior Tatianna Thomas and 11points from junior Megan Ford, outscored Poly 13-11 in the second quarter. But junior Jasmine Dixon scored 15 of her game-high 24 points in the third quarter for the Jackrabbits, who won their 27th consecutive game since a December loss to the nation’s top-ranked team, Collins Hill of Suwanee,Ga. “When we saw the draw, our goal was to get to this game,” said Munroe, who finishes with a 385-114 record, 15 Foothill League titles and two Southern Section championships. “We wanted to play the best and see what they’re all about.” LONG BEACH – Dave Munroe could have gathered all the best players he coached during his 18-year tenure at Hart High of Newhall and they still might not have been enough to keep pace Saturday night with host Long Beach Poly. The Jackrabbits, the state’s top-ranked girls’ basketball team by Cal-Hi Sports and No. 2 nationally by USA Today, combined suffocating full-court defense with relentless rebounding and several easy transition baskets to make Munroe’s final game on the Indians’ sidelines an anticlimactic one. Long Beach Poly built a 17-point first-quarter lead and forced 32 turnovers to record a 71-41 victory over the fourth-seeded Indians in the Southern California regional semifinals of the Div. I state playoffs, bringing an end to the career of one of the area’s most successful coaches. “You’re going to lose your last game, unless you’re state champions,” said Munroe, who guided Hart (29-4) to two state playoff victories in the same season for the first time in the program’s history. “We have good players, but we’re not a state championship team, so you go in knowing you’re going to lose your last game. With Long Beach Poly, I don’t think they think that way.” With two minutes left in the third quarter, one play typified Hart’s struggle to deal with Poly’s defensive pressure. Senior Amanda Ajdari had to throw an inbounds pass well into the backcourt from under her own basket to avoid a five-second call. “We came out very nervous. There’s definitely a little bit of intimidation involved (playing here),” Munroe said. “We dug a hole in the first quarter and that’s a tough deficit to come back from.” firstname.lastname@example.org (818) 713-3607 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!