St. Joe Suffers First Loss In Viz Tourney Final To No. 1 Incarnate Word
Angels take second place at Viz for the third straight year, after losing to the Red Knights, who claimed their fifth straight Viz tourney title.
TOWN AND COUNTRY -- An intense, back-and-forth battle for the coveted championship trophy of the Visitation Academy Holiday Girls Basketball Tournament turned inside out against St. Joseph’s Academy on Friday.
The Angels were ahead 9-8 at the end of the first quarter, and even enjoyed a brief 11-10 lead early in the second quarter.
But from that point on, the No. 1-ranked team in all of St. Louis area girls basketball -- Incarnate Word Academy -- controlled every aspect of the game, and was able to ease its way to a 49-34 win over St. Joe.
Incarnate, which is now 10-0 and has been ranked as high as No. 10 in the nation by ESPN and other high school girls basketball polls, took control by outscoring the Angels 14-3 in the second quarter.
St. Joe seemed to have trouble solving Incarnate’s full-court pressure defense. The Angels turned the ball over a season-high 16 times, and Incarnate scored many of its points off those SJA miscues.
Sophomore Napheesa Collier, the Viz tourney MVP, had a game-high 16 points, along with 10 rebounds, six blocks, and five steals to lead Incarnate to its ninth Viz title, with eight of those coming in the last nine years.
Senior Sydney Stipanovich had 10 points and eight rebounds to lead St. Joe, which finishes the first half of the season with a 7-1 record and is ranked No. 2 in the city among all Large School girls‘ teams.
The Angels will get a full week off to enjoy the rest of their holiday break from school, before returning to action next Saturday, January 5, with a game against Carthage (MO) in the Prepcasts Shootout, which will be played at De Smet High School.
Tip off for the game that evening is scheduled for 7 p.m.
Score by Quarters ........... 1 ... 2 ... 3 ... 4 -- Final Score
St. Joseph’s ..................... 9 ... 3 .. 11 . 11 -- 34
Incarnate Word ............... 8 .. 14 . 17 . 10 -- 49
St. Joseph’s -- Sydney Stipanovich 10, Erin Nelson 8, Susie Schmank 6, Emmie Haring 4, Mary Barton 3, Lexi Gorman 2, Jackie Karl 1.
Incarnate Word -- Napheesa Collier 16, Nakiah Bell 12, McKenna Treece 10, Gwen Adams 4, Nia Roth 3, Carly Frala 2, Katie Lacefield 2.
VIZ TOURNAMENT All-TOURNAMENT TEAM -- First Team
Sydney Stipanovich, St. Joseph’s
Napheesa Collier, Incarnate Word -- Tournament MVP
Alexis Chappelle, Hazelwood Central
Becca Steins, Parkway South
Abbie Marshall, Nerinx Hall
Lizzy Wendell, Blue Springs
Nia Roth, Incarnate Word
Erin Nelson, St. Joseph’s
VIZ TOURNAMENT ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM -- Second Team
Nakiah Bell, Incarnate Word
Cami Unger,Webster Groves
Allie Ball, Principia
Karlay Middlebrook, Blue Springs
Mallory Moran, Webster Groves
Maddie Simonds, Nerinx Hall
Emma Mitchell, Visitation
Jenn Dynis, Visitation