The St. James girls basketball team (9-7) wrapped up play in the California Tournament with games against Fulton on Friday, Jan. 12 and Battle on Saturday, Jan. 14. The Lady Tigers won both games by 30 or more points on their way to winning the consolation championship.
St. James kicked things off with a dominating 56-19 win over Fulton. St. James played excellent defense all night long, holding Fulton to four or fewer points in three quarters. The game was close early on, with the Lady Tigers holding on to a 13-9 lead after the first quarter on the back of six points form Mikeala Donnelly. After that, it was all St. James. Hannah Marcee scored seven points in the second, while fellow freshman Riley Whitener added five more and St. James went into the half with a commanding 25-13 lead.
The Lady Tigers ran away with things in the third, exploding for 26 points, while holding Fulton to just four. Alyssa Rinehart buried three shots from long range to lead St. James with nine points in the quarter, but a total of six Lady Tigers scored and four hit multiple shots from the field. St. James led 51-17 going into the fourth, where they slowed things down to finish off a 56-19 win.
Marcee led all scorers with 12 points, while pulling down five rebounds and grabbing two steals. Donnelly added 10 points, three rebounds and two steals. Alyssa Rinehart scored nine points and had a steal, while her sister Ashlyn chipped in with eight points, three steals, two rebounds and an assist. Savanna Riccetti led St. James in steals with five, while also adding two points, two assists and a rebound. Bailey Wells had a well rounded night with four points, four boards, four steals and a team-high six assists.
That win propelled St. James into the consolation championship that saw very similar results. The Lady Tigers held Battle to five or fewer points in three quarters and instantly got out to an 11-3 lead after a quarter of play. Ashlyn Rinhart had a great first half with 10 points and a pair of threes and St. James went into halftime with a comfortable 26-12 lead.
The Lady Tigers again went off in the third, scoring 24 points to put the game out of reach. Ashlyn Rinehart scored another 10 points in the third quarter alone, as five players scored for St. James to stretch their lead out to 50-17. St. James slowed the pace down in the fourth to run out the clock on a 57-20 win.
Ashlyn Rinehart led all scorers with 20 points, single-handedly matching Battle's full team. She also added seven rebounds and an assist. Wells chipped in 11 points to go along with five boards, three assists and two steals. Marcee added eight points and three rebounds, while Whitener scored seven points to go with three rebounds, a steal and an assist in the win.
St. James will now have the week off as the boys host their tournament. Their next game will be against Rolla at home for a rematch of the US Bank Holiday Tournament semi-final, which St. James won 51-45.