EDWARDSVILLE - Madison Webb led the way with 28 points, and Anna McKee added 13 as Father McGivney Catholic won its first-ever IHSA Class 1A regional championship in a 53-27 win over host Metro-East Lutheran in the final, played Friday night at Hooks Gym.
Get The Latest News!
Don't miss our top stories and need-to-know news everyday in your inbox.
The Griffins jumped out to a 16-5 lead at the end of the first quarter and not looking back in McGivney's historic win.
"The girls played well, and executed what we wanted them to do, offensively and defensively," said Griffin head coach Jeff Oller.
McGivney won their first championship of any kind in only their fourth year of varsity competition, and it's a reward for all of the work that the Griffins put in building the program.
"It's been four years at the varsity level," Oller said, "and the girls put in a lot of work, so it's great to see it come to fruition for them, and see it pay off. They worked so hard in season and out-of-season to be the best they could be."
And as a coach, Oller is very happy with the championship and what it means to the school.
"I feel great," Oller said. "Just really proud of them, and ready to prepare for the next one."
The Griffins extended their lead to 29-12 at halftime and 49-22 after three quarters, forcing the running clock rule to kick in during the fourth quarter as McGivney went on to the championship win.
Charlize Luehmann added five points for McGivney, while Riley Zumwalt had three points and both Alexis Bod and Macy Hoppes had two points each. Emma Daniel led the Knights with nine points, while Anna Stewart had eight, Chloe Langendorf and Destiny Williams both had three points and Jennifer Leitner and Caitlyn Reynolds scored two points each.
The Griffins are now 25-7 and advance to their first sectional, where they will meet Carrollton in the Centralia Christ Our Rock Lutheran sectional semifinal, with the tip-off coming at 7 p.m. A win puts McGivney into the final on Thursday night against Jacksonville Routt Catholic, the host Silver Stallions or Hardin Calhoun. Oller knows that his team will be ready for the opportunity.
"I think we're going to approach it like we always do," Oller said. "Work hard in practice, get to know their personnel and know what we want to do. And to put together a plan of action," he said with a laugh.
Not only will the team be ready, but so will everyone at the school.
"We've had a lot of support all year from the students, families and faculty," Oller said. "We'll be ready to go on Monday night."
More like this: