By Aidan Fitzsimon
The St. Ignatius girls basketball team can put up points in a hurry and it showed on Wednesday.
St Patrick-St. Vincent of Vallejo could only hang with the host Wildcats so long in the semifinal round of the Leo LaRocca Sand Dune Classic, before St. Ignatius cruised to a 74-56 victory.
St. Ignatius (8-1) led the Bruins (8-2) 18-15 after the first quarter and 40-31 at the halftime break, but the Wildcats continued to put points up early in the second half, while the Bruins had an extended cold streak early in the third quarter.
St. Ignatius standout senior guard Maria Kemiji-McDonald led the Wildcats with 18 points, but when the Bruins focused on her, another SI player would hit a key shot.
Freshman center Josie Little took advantage of her height and inside advantage to score 10 points, while senior guard Stacy Ward hit 3-of-4 shots from 3-point range in the second half to finish with 11 points.
“It’s still [non-league], so we are still working on a lot of different things offensively and defensively,” said St. Ignatius head coach Mike Mulkerrins. “We just have to get ready for [the West Catholic Athletic] league. That’s our main focus right now.”
While the Wildcats featured balance on the offensive end, the Bruins leaned heavily on senior guard Taylor Hamilton, who had a game-high 20 points and shot 80 percent from the field.
But the most significant difference was St. Ignatius’ depth. The Wildcats got 23 points off the bench, compared to St. Patrick-St. Vincent’s nine points from non-starters.
“St. Ignatius is a solid program. They were disciplined and worked hard,” said St. Patrick-St. Vincent head coach Nadine Walker. “We played a good team tonight and we didn’t show up.”
Maria Kemiji McDonald — 18
Stacey Ward — 11
Kaitlyn Crawley — 10
Josie Little — 10
Courtney Gong — 8
St. Patrick-St. Vincent
Taylor Hamilton — 20
Paige Reed —8
Zaria Mesack — 7
Three players tied with 6 points