Girls Basketball: St Francis de Sales tops Westmont
Updated: February 14, 2012 8:52PM
Long distance wasn’t connecting for St. Francis de Sales. So the Pioneers changed it up in the second half and came away with a 32-27 victory in the first Class 2A sectional semifinal game at Chicago Christian in Palos Heights on Monday.
The Pioneers will move to face the winner of the Hope vs Aurora Central Catholic winner on Thursday.
“I just listened to what my coaches were telling me at halftime,” de Sales guard Brianta McMorris said. “They said don’t shoot us out of the game. I knew automatically to go to the hole.”
Westmont (19-12) came out in a 2-3 zone and it was effective. The Pioneers (17-10) were settling for jump shots and as a result drew no fouls in the first half. De Sales missed all 15 of its three-point attempts in the first half Westmont led 16-10.
That changed immediately in the third quarter as de Sales attacked the basket and tied the game on a Taylor O’Bannon layup midway through the third quarter. In the meantime the Pioneers went to its own 2-3 zone and forced the Sentinels into missing the its first nine shots of the quarter.
“They played a lot better defensively in the second half,” Westmont coach Mike McMord said. “They just played harder than us in the second half.”
After Susan Sternard put Westmont on top temporarily, McMorris and Isis Mance went to work. The pair led de Sales on a game-deciding 8-0 run near the end of the third quarter for a 24-18 lead. McMorris scored all 10 of her points in the second half and six in the decisive run. Mance had a basket and an assist in the run and dominated the boards with 13 rebounds overall.
“Mance dominated the paint in the second half,” Pioneers coach Terrence Streater said. “Brianta was just outstanding as well.”
Amanda Anderson helped lead Westmont to the first half lead by scoring seven of her 12 points. Susan Sternard scored eight points for the Sentinels.
“We had one starter back from last year in Jackie (Elzakhem),” McMord daid. “I thought we did really well to make it to this point.”