The Paul VI girl’s basketball team has dominated the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference for the last few years. The Panthers have won two straight conference championships and look to win their third straight against St. John’s.
It was another great season Paul VI. They went 29-1 (17-1 in the WCAC) which was good for the top spot in the conference. Their only loss came against Good Counsel on Jan. 7. That game ended an impressive 14-game winning streak. Paul VI responded by winning the rest of their games.
Sophomore forward Amira Collins led the way for Paul VI this year. Collins averaged a team best 13.8 points per game. She scored 23 points in against McEachern on Dec. 12 and a season-high 25 points when Paul VI played Archbishop Carroll on Jan. 12. Freshman guard Ashley Owusu was second on the team in scoring with 12.1 points per game.
Paul VI took on St. Mary’s Ryken in the first game of the WCAC Girl’s Basketball playoffs on Feb. 19. It was close game throughout the first half as the game was tied at 27 going into halftime. But a strong second half by the Panthers led to a 63-52 victory. Amira Collins scored a game-high 23 points while Ashley Owusu chipped in 15.
After a one day break, Paul VI was back in action when they played Elizabeth Seton in the semifinals on Feb. 21. The Panthers had a strong first quarter, outscoring the Roadrunners 21-8. That set the tone for Paul VI to walk away with a 60-50 victory. Kate Klimkiewicz scored 17 points while Amira Collins had 19 points. Jasmine Whitney was third best scorer on the team with 12 points.
St. John’s is coming into the championship game with as the No. 2 seed in the conference. During the regular season, the Cadets went 23-6 and 13-5 in the WCAC. St. John’s started the season 2-1 then went on an outstanding 13-game winning streak.
Senior Kayla Robbins averaged 14.4 points per game to lead St. John’s. Her best game was against Bishop Ireton on Dec. 8 when she scored 27 points. That game was one of four games where she scored 20 or more points. Junior Aisha Sheppard had a solid season, averaging 14.1 points per game.
The Cadets opened the playoffs with a 71-50 win over Bishop McNamara on Feb. 19. Both teams were tied at the end of the first quarter. But St. John’s managed to outscore the Mustangs after that point. Kayla Robbins had 23 points while Niya Beverley scored 20 points.
In the semifinals, St. John’s managed to take down a really good Good Counsel team 58-53. The Cadets had a 29-20 lead going into the half. The Falcons found a way to come back to tie the game at 39 in the third quarter. The Cadets answered back with a strong fourth quarter to win the game.
When Paul VI and St. John’s met up in the regular season, the Panthers won both games. In the first meeting on Jan. 19, Paul VI won 77-68. St. John’s had a 22-19 lead at the end of the first quarter but couldn’t hold on. Both teams had three players to score in double-figures. For Paul VI, Ashley Owusu had 22 points, Jasmine Whitney scored 16 points while Raven James added 12. St. John’s Sarah Overcash scored 16 points, Kayla Robbins had 17 and Aisha Sheppard collected 15 points.
A solid first half by Paul VI proved to be the difference maker in their 59-58 win over St. John’s on Jan. 31. Ashley Owusu had another good game against the Cadets, scoring 17 points. Amira Collins had 14 points while Kate Klimkiewicz scored 13 points. For St. John’s, Aisha Sheppard had 18 points while Niya Beverley finished with 13 points.
The championship game between Paul VI and St. John’s will take place at American University. Tip-off is scheduled for 6pm and the boys game will happen right after. Expect to see a great turnout by both fan bases.
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