By a quirk of fate, it will be MICDS, not St. Joseph’s Academy playing Incarnate Word Academy in the state sectional game of the Missouri basketball tournament tomorrow night. The game is between MICDS (24-2) and IWA (27-0) at Parkway West at 7:45 p.m.
IWA, long a class 5 team (like St. Joe) dropped its enrollment and became a class 4 team this season.
That is good news for the St. Joe Angels, but not so much for the MICDS Rams. The Rams defense will have to find a way to slow up sophomore sensation Napheesa Collier, the top scorer in the Metro. The combined averages of MICDS’ top scorers Emily Kyman, 11.9, Taylor Baur, 9.9 and Caroline Militello 7.8 are just slightly higher than Colliers 24.7 points per game.
Rams coach Scott Small takes matters in stride. “We are thrilled to be where we are and proud of the success that the kids have achieved this year and eager to play more basketball.”
MICDS had to come from behind to beat rival Westminster Christian Academy in the finals of the Clayton District last Thursday. Kyman hit a clutch free throw in the last two seconds to send that game to overtime, and an eventual win.
Small looks back tot he district series. “I was proud of our kids. I was a little worried that they might look past Villa Duchesne with the anticipated game with Westminster.”
Since beating WCA in districts in 2010, the Rams have had a dry spell facing their west county nemesis.
“We had to fight back. (Brooke) Cusumano hit a three-pointer with 1:18 to play in regulation and we had a five-point deficit. We were able to win with five players in double figures,” said the coach.
The winner of the Parkway West showdown game moves on to the quarterfinals Saturday at Francis Howell Central, tipoff 2:45 p.m. The opponent will be either St. Dominic (14-10) or Kirksville (22-1), depending upon Wednesday’s outcome.
St. Joe goes to Northwest House Springs
The Angels (20-5) face Jackson 15-12 in a 7:45 p.m. tipoff Wednesday night.
The Angels wrapped up the trip by beating Nerinx Hall for the second time in the season Friday night for the district title at Ladue Thursday.
Angels coach Julie Matheny has a scouting report ready. "Jackson is always a fundamentally solid team. What they don't have in height - they make up in speed and quickness. Our girls are anxious about the sectionals and taking nobody lightly. They will have the stands filled as both the Jackson girls and boys teams will be playing - We are hoping the Chaminade fans will cheer for the Angels," said Matheny.
St. Joe won the district title, 58-44 over Nerinx Hall. Erin Nelson had 17 and Sydney Stipanovich 16 in the title game. Nelson is averaging 16.5 points per game; Stipanovich 15.2 and 11.6 rebounds per game. The Angels have won 10 of their last 12 games.
The winner faces Parkway South (25-3)or Parkway Central (20-7) Saturday at Lindenwood University in St. Charles. That game begins at 2:45 p.m.
Winners of these games advance to the Final 4 in Columbia the following weekend.