Yellowjackets lose on Senior Night to San Gorgonio, end night undefeated

Reyna Chavez returns for Senior Night, inspiring her team during their final game together


Natali Caceres steadies Reyna Chavez as Reyna rises to put in two points.

Colton, CA—Emotions have been running high all week for the Lady Yellowjackets.

On Monday after practice, starting forward Reyna Chavez was hit by a car while walking home. Because of the stress and concern over Chavez’s well-being, the team canceled their league game at Fontana High.

They needed a win. And they got one. Just not the one they expected.

For their final game of the season, Colton faced San Gorgonio in a non-league contest. San Gorgonio, led by junior Jaylen Russell’s 30 points, defeated Colton 54-40.

Madison Barrera, Colton’s star center, scored 22 points for the Yellowjackets and was a strong presence on the boards. Other contributors included Zoe Nunez and Brianna Chacon, each with 5 points.

However, the most important points of the game came from Reyna Chavez. Four days after her accident, she entered Hubbs Gym in a wheelchair, accompanied by her large family and swarm of friends. She joined her teammates for Senior Night and sat with them on the bench for her last game as a senior.

Then, with 1:13 left in the game, her number was called. The game was already decided, so San Gorgonio, in a display of class, held back their players. Head coach Keisha Young wheeled Chavez onto the court over to the Colton basket. She rose from her wheelchair, took the ball from Madison Barrera and put in a layup.

Chavez reflected on her scoring opportunity after the game. “It felt really depressing and surprising at the same time that I got to stand up and make an actual basket. It was kind of embarrassing, you know, because I didn’t make it the first two times. But I caught my own rebound, so I’m very happy with myself.”

For the other girls on the team, Senior Night was the culmination of four years, plus one lost pandemic year, of hard work and dedication.

Madison Barrera didn’t even know how to play basketball when she tried out for the team as a freshman. “I was softball all the way. And then I started and I fell in love.” 

This experience made her nostalgic. “It’s crazy realizing that I’m never going to play basketball again, but I spent my last year here with all my friends and coaches.”

Italy Morales had a lot of feelings about her final game as a senior. “Sad, emotional. Mad that I couldn’t play all that much because I kept falling on my butt.” 

Mixed emotions about her final game aside, she only had one feeling about her teammates. “They’re practically my family. I live and breathe with them, literally, 24/7.”

With the heightened emotions surrounding the week and Senior Night events, the game’s outcome faded into the background, a footnote for an evening marked by resilience and family.


You can access the Lady Yellowjackets’ petition to the Colton City Council for the installation of signs or reflectors at the Rancho/E Street crosswalk HERE.