By Brian Towey
The win came on the heels of the Lady Royals' only blemish on their 2000-2001 slate, a defeat to nationally ranked Bullis Prep (Md.) Saturday at West Chester University (Pa.). With less than 24 hours to prepare for the Lady Terriers, head coach Bob Mackey was satisfied with the effort his team put forth.
“Mentally, it was tough to get ready for this game,” Mackey said. “It was a tough loss that expended a lot of energy and then we had to drive three hours home.”
St. Francis had few answers for Droesch and her potent blend of size and quickness, the Parade All-American wreaking havoc on both ends of the floor.
“Clare is capable of taking over a game at any point and time,” Mackey said. “She had some problems with our loss yesterday, but she responded like I thought she would.”
“Clare is an All-American and a great player,” said St. Francis coach Tom Finn. “I didn't expect anything else from her.”
Early on, St. Francis was able to weather Christ the King's disruptive press. Buoyed by the strong play of Dawn Kirchoff on the interior, the Lady Terriers took a 15-14 lead at 1:19 in the first quarter.
The second quarter saw the Lady Royals expose some chinks in St. Francis' armor, harassing the Lady Terriers into a succession of turnovers. A Droesch steal and lay-in sparked a 16-0 Christ the King run, with the senior leading the way with 12 of her team's unanswered points.
“We didn't handle the press well,” said Finn of his team's ball-handling woes.
The Lady Royals' second stanza outburst distanced them from St. Francis, with Christ the King taking a 46-29 lead into the half.
After the break, St. Francis continued to struggle with Christ the King's defensive pressure, as the Lady Royals parlayed Prep miscues into more offensive opportunities.
Christ the King extended its lead to as many as 28 midway through the third quarter, never looking back.
“We're not ducking anybody,” said Finn, the loss dropping his team to 4-1 in conference play and 9-2 overall. “We want to be tournament-tough at the end of the year.”
The St. Francis coach stressed the benefits of having a team of Christ the King's caliber on his team's regular season schedule.
“I wanted to use this game as a barometer,” said Finn. “It's all a part of the learning process.”
The win ups Christ the King's record to 13-1, 5-0 in conference play heading into Friday's matchup with Stella Maris.
Bullis Prep (Md.) 68, Christ the King 65. Christina Catalanotto scored a team-high 18 and Amanda LoCasio added 17 for the Royals, who dropped their first game of the season Saturday. North Carolina-bound Monique Curry led the victors with 27.
The Mary Louis Academy 62, Stella Maris 58. Donna Lohrey continues to shine for the Hilltoppers, leading Mary Louis with 26 points to up the team's league mark to 3-3. Krissy Locascio added 10.
The Mary Louis Academy 56, Bishop Loughlin 39. Lohrey had 10 points and five steals, while Liz Strein led the team's scoring with 12 in a win over the Bishop Loughlin Lions last week.
St. Francis Prep 60, St. Joseph's by the Sea 33. The Terriers were led by point guard Dawn Gorynski's 19 points in this non-league win last week. Elizabeth Yeuman contributed 10 for the winners.
St. John's Prep 58. St. Agnes 21. In a rematch of last year's CHSAA 'B' city championship, the Red Storm prevailed, thanks to Amy Mascia leading the way with 11 and Christina Jones and Lora Morton adding 10 apiece. St. John's Prep improved to 9-3 overall and 5-0 in league play with the win.
– Anthony Bosco contributed to this story