Girls Basketball: Edom leads Montini to sectional championship with win over St. Joseph
St. Joseph's Donna Koerber (left) takes a shot on Kateri Stone of Montini during the Hinsdale South sectional final on Feb. 23. Montini won 75-35. | Joe Cyganowski ~ For Sun Times Media
Updated: April 2, 2012 8:13AM
Nikia Edom scored a game-high 23 points, including five three-pointers, to lead No. 8 Montini to a 75-35 victory Thursday night over No. 23 St. Joseph in the Class 3A Glenbard South Sectional final.
For the first time Wednesday, Montini coach Jason Nichols showed his team the video from the first meeting against St. Joseph.
It was a horror show. The game was a reminder for the Broncos of what happens when the two-time defending Class 3A state champions give up a late lead. St. Joseph went on an 18-5 run in the second half to win that game.
No. 8 and top-seeded Montini did not allow any Chargers comeback Thursday night. The Broncos rolled to a 75-35 victory in the Class 3A Glenbard South Sectional final. Junior guard Nikia Edom scored 12 of her game-high 23 points on four first-quarter three-pointers to lead Montini (30-5), which plays Crane (17-6) at 6 p.m. Monday in the Hinsdale Central Supersectional. Crane defeated Guerin (29-4) 47-42 to win the Fenton Sectional final Thursday.
The first meeting of the season between Montini and St. Joseph (22-11) Dec. 29 at the Montini Christmas Classic put the Chargers in the tournament championship game, which they won. St. Joseph won 39-34 behind Donna Koerber’s late free throws and 14 points.
“We had a talk (about the first game),” Edom said. “Coach said we did not play well. We had 25 turnovers.”
The Broncos pulled away in the rematch by starting a decisive 28-1 run by scoring the last eight points of the first quarter. Montini turned a 12-11 lead into a 38-12 advantage at halftime. The No. 23 and second-seeded Chargers missed all seven of their shot attempts in the second quarter and scored their only point on Chanel Brown’s free throw with 4:38 to go.
Briya Wilborn (team-high 10 points), who missed most of the second quarter due to foul trouble, scored her only first-half basket on a 10-foot running jumper to trim Montini’s lead to 12-9 in the first quarter.
“When Briya is out, we have difficulty scoring,” St. Joseph coach Jim Maley said. “They were smart enough to not press. Teams that press us give us a chance to score a lot. We were out of sync offensively. We did not move the ball.”
After Wilborn’s first-quarter basket, the Chargers went 12:35 without a field goal in the game.
“The second quarter was awesome,” Nichols said. “It started with the defense. When this team moves its feet and gets tips and plays clutch, it’s hard to score (against us).”
Montini won its eighth consecutive sectional title. St. Joseph won its first sectional title last season when Koerber and Wilborn were juniors. In her final high school game, Koerber finished with nine points and six rebounds.
Both Koeber and Wilborn were removed from the game with slightly more than two minutes remaining in the game. Koerber played for the varsity for four years while Wilborn was on the team for three years.
“This loss is tough. The saddest thing for a coach is knowing that you have written their names in the (score)book for the last time,” Maley said.
Koerber and Wilborn combined to score seven points in the first half. Koerber missed her only shot attempt in the second quarter while Wilborn did not take any attempts.
“I will miss the team, especially Deja Horn and Chanel Brown,” Koerber said. “We had them last year when they were freshmen. They really picked their game up a lot.”