By Bonta Hill
The St. Ignatius girls basketball team showed no ill effects from a 19-point loss to Archbishop Mitty on Saturday in a spirited matchup against its archrival on Tuesday.
The Wildcats never trailed against Sacred Heart Cathedral, defeating the Irish 56-44 in West Catholic Athletic League action at USF’s War Memorial Gymnasium.
St. Ignatius (11-2, 2-1) scored the last seven points of the first half to carry a a 29-13 lead into the half.
Meanwhile, Sacred Heart (7-7, 2-1) shot a paltry 18 percent from the floor in the first half and it proved to be too much to overcome.
The Irish did make a run in the second half and cut the St. Ignatius lead to 48-42 on GeAnna Summers-Luaulu’s layup with 3:48 left in the game, but that was the closest the Irish would get, as the Wildcats scored the next four points to put the game out of reach.
“We knew Sacred Heart would make a run at us, but our seniors led the way at the end and their leadership was the key to maintaining the lead in the second half,” said St. Ignatius head coach Mike Mulkerrins.
Although Sacred Heart was able to shake the cold shooting in the third quarter and score the first seven points of the second half, it wasn’t enough, as St. Ignatius broke the Irish’s full-court pressure, leading to easy baskets.
“We talked at halftime about attacking them and slowing the pace down, and we did that in the third quarter,” said Sacred Heart head coach Mike Carey. “But that run [St. Ignatius] made in the second quarter was tough to come back from.”
Senior Kaitlyn Crawley led St. Ignatius with 12 points, while fellow senior Maria Kemiji-McDonald added 11.
SI freshmen centers Josie Little and Sydney Raggio were also effective, combining for 15 points while controlling the glass for the Wildcats.
Photo slideshow by Doug Ko and Eric Luis
“We knew they were big and how we had to limit them to one shot, but our problem was that our defensive rotations were a little slow,” Carey said. “It’s the third league game and we’ll continue working on that and we’ll be ready for them the next time around.”
St. Ignatius exacted a bit of revenge from last year’s Central Coast Section Division III championship loss to Sacred Heart, but Mulkerrins said that defeat, along with their last loss to Mitty, are distant memories.
“Every game is a new season and you can’t dwell in the past,” Mullkerrins said. “[Those games have] been buried.”
Kaitlyn Crawley – 12
Maria Kemiji-McDonald – 11
Josie Little – 9
Courtney Gong – 6
Sydney Raggio – 6
Sacred Heart Cathedral
Jerrieza Enriquez – 9
Ashley Gainer – 7
GeAnna Summers-Luaulu – 7
Kayla Coloyan – 6
Briannah Smith – 5