Girls Basketball: St Joseph pulls away from North Chicago
Updated: January 16, 2012 6:41PM
Much is demanded of Briya Wilborn.
“She’s out go-to scorer and she also plays the point for us,” St. Joseph coach Jim Maley said of his senior guard.
Wilborn hit two crucial three-pointers and scored a team-best 16 points as the No. 25 Chargers rode a 10-3 third-quarter run to a 69-50 victory over North Chicago in the MLK Dream Classic at Young Monday morning.
The final score was misleading as the Chargers (16-5) led by only five points early in the fourth quarter. “I told the girls after the game I’m glad we don’t have any more games this year that start before noon,” Maley said. “We had another early game like this in a Christmas tournament, and for whatever reason we’ve started out very slowly with these early games.”
Wilborn added five assists, four rebounds and four assists. Senior forward Donna Koerber scored nine of her 11 points in the first half, staking the Chargers to a 33-28 lead at the break.
After scoring just six first-half points, Wilborn took control. “Her strength is shooting off the dribble,“ Maley said. Wilborn changed the tenor of the game with a three-pointer from the left baseline off a set play that punctuated a 10-3 run for a 43-31 advantage.
“I just like to do whatever I have to do help the team win,” Wilborn said. “I thought it was very important that we maintain our intensity and really push the pace against them to get easy baskets.”
Behind the sharp-shooting of junior guard Darniqua Hood, the Warhawks (6-11) fought back. Hood scored 14 of her game-high 24 points in the second half.
Her three-point play and basket in transition sparked a North Chicago rally that narrowed the deficit to 50-43 entering the fourth quarter.
Hood’s three early points in the fourth quarter pulled the Warhawks within 53-48. Working a nearly identical spot as the third-quarter three-pointer, Wilborn drilled a three-pointer that enabled them to methodically pull away.
“We got a little too comfortable with the first lead and we were a little careless with the ball,” Wilborn said. “Our coach called timeout, and we calmed down and I was able to hit that shot that let us pull away.”
St. Joseph junior center Shaakera Jones contributed 12 points and eight rebounds. Sophomore guard Deja Horn scored six of her eight points in the fourth quarter. Sophomore forward Chanel Brown also scored eight points.
Sophomore guard Carolyn Leonard added nine points for the Warhawks and junior guard Dara Tanner contributed eight points.