ST. MONICA — St. Monica’s Briana Harris had enough.
With her team trailing during the second half, the St. Monica star senior took matters into her own hands, carrying the scoring load down the stretch to stave off a frisky Brentwood team, 47-41, on Monday during the St. Monica Winter Tournament in girls’ basketball.
“I just had to take my time,” Harris said. “I was getting motivation from my team, that helped.”
Harris led all scorers with 24 points on the night. Brentwood guard Drew Cabral led the Eagles with 12 before injuring herself late in the fourth quarter. The extent of her injury was not reported, but she didn’t re-enter the game after what appeared to be a leg injury.
St. Monica may have been able to pull out the win to improve to 5-1 on the season, but things looked grim during the early part of the second half.
Harris, with three fouls, sat out the end of the second quarter, forced to watch her Mariners give up a 10-point first-half advantage, ultimately leading just 18-16 at halftime. She also sat for the first few minutes of the second half before head coach John Skinner summoned his main scoring threat to right the Mariners’ ship.
Making matters worse, senior forward Melissa Maragnes was also in foul trouble. She would eventually foul out leaving Harris and Co. to win the day.
St. Monica was down by as many as 5 points late in the third quarter, which is when Harris began her late game heroics.
She hit on a short jumper and a 3-pointer down by 5, tying the game at 28-28. After a jumper by Brentwood’s Aminah Reid-Brydon, Harris struck again with a pair of buckets to give St. Monica a lead it wouldn’t surrender.
Led by Cabral, Brentwood would show signs of getting back into the game, but Harris and a compliment of shooters grounded the Eagles.
“I’m proud of her tonight,” Skinner said of Harris. “She doesn’t only want to do well, she only wants to win. She doesn’t like the taste of losing.”
Along with Harris, Skinner pointed out the performance of freshman guard Elena Kostadinov, who hit key jump-shots en route to scoring 8 on the night. Fellow guard Llyah Lewis also contributed 8.
St. Monica’s Winter Tournament will continue through Friday. St. Monica took on Paraclete on Wednesday, but results of the game were not available at presstime.
The Mariners wrap the tournament with games against Notre Dame Academy and El Segundo on Thursday and Friday, respectively.
Although being dubbed a tournament, the event is more of an invitational showcase with no teams advancing to a would-be championship.