WASHINGTON, D.C. — St. John’s (Washington, D.C.) guard Carly Rivera didn’t have to think long to remember when she last had a game like she did in Monday’s Washington Catholic Athletic Conference girls basketball championship.
“Never,” Rivera said. “I’ve never had a game like this.”
The junior point guard had 16 points, including four three-pointers, to lead a balanced effort for the the No. 6-ranked Cadets in their 54-49 defeat of No. 8 Paul VI (Fairfax, Va.).
It was St. John’s second consecutive WCAC title, but to do it, it had to hold off a mammoth game from Panthers wing Ashley Owusu, who had 26 points, including 17 in the second half.
The Panthers (28-4) did a good job of shutting down Cadets freshman guard Azzi Fudd, who had 10 points in the first half but only two in the second. St. John’s had plenty in reserve with Rivera, who made all six of her shots from the floor, and guard Alex Cowan hitting big shots whenever the Panthers made a move.
“With a player like Azzi, everybody is going to key on her,” Rivera said. “We had to prove to them that our team is not just Azzi. We had five capable players on the floor.”
When Rivera hit her third trey of the game just before the half, even she had to shake her head.
“The heat check was long gone at that point,” she said.
A big key for the Cadets (29-2) was slowing down Paul VI senior post Amira Collins, who had 12 points in the first half but nothing after intermission.