Chandler Seton Catholic High School’s girls basketball team hadn’t seen a team that could outrun it until this afternoon when Kayenta Monument Valley strode into town for a matchup with the Sentinels.
For the first half plus, Monument Valley was winning that game within the game, but Seton managed to stay close and lead. The Sentinels pulled away in the final period, beating Monument Valley somewhat at its own game and posting a 56-46 victory in the opening game of the sixth annual Martin Luther King Jr. Classic at Arizona State’s Wells Fargo Arena.
“I told the team at halftime we met a team that can outrun us,” Seton coach Karen Self said. “We did a good job defensively, better in the fourth quarter.”
Seton (19-3) used a 10-2 run in the first five minutes of the final period to turn away Monument Valley (10-3). Sophomore post Theresa Wirth scored a game-high 24 points on 8-of-12 shooting from the field and 8-of-8 accuracy from the free-throw line. Wirth also added a game-high 16 rebounds.
Seton’s fourth-period run took place because Seton’s transition defense and defense in the half-court was so good. Monument Valley made just 3-of-13 shots in the final quarter, none of which came in transition. The win was gratifying for Self, who remembers well the many battles with 3A competition earlier in the decade.
“My kids were stunned by it (transition),” Self said. “But we adjusted to it in the second half. For us to beat a reservation team is an accomplishment. They play good basketball.”
Wirth had a nice individual battle with Monument Valley sophomore post Bradley Nash. Nash finished with 20 points (11 in the first period). Nash sat out 5 1/2 minutes of the second period after picking up her third foul, but returned active again in the third period with six points. Nash was bottled up in the final period, scoring just two points on 1-of-5 shooting. Monument Valley freshman guard Destinee Holiday chipped in 10 points.
Seton got the usual support offensively for Wirth. Fellow sophomore Kayla Bustos tallied 11 points and senior Katie Doerer added 10 points.