IRONDEQUOIT — The Bishop Kearney Lady Kings enter the 2013 New York State Public High School Athletic Association Final Four having won 10 straight games heading into their semifinal matchup with the AuSable Valley Lady Patriots.
The Section V champion Kings (17-8) and Patriots (19-2) will play the second of the Class C semifinals to be held at Hudson Valley Community College Saturday, March 16, at 2:15 p.m.
The Kings started their season with a 44-36 loss to Nottingham and a 52-41 loss against O’Hara, which were split by a 71-27 victory over Marshall. The team then won four of its next five games against Hornell (47-37), Palmyra-Macedonia (48-39), Marshall (56-21) and Aquinas (40-37), with a loss to Wellsville (56-53) in the middle.
The toughest stretch of the season for the Kings started with a four-game losing streak that started with a 45-31 loss to Sutherland Jan. 19, followed by losses to Our Lady of Mercy (51-43), Newark (43-39) and another to Mercy (42-30). After winning two straight against Wilson (42-19) and avenging a loss to Wellsville (78-69), the Kings lost their eighth game of the season against Honeoye Falls-Lima, 51-30.
Bishop Kearney’s current 10-game win streak started Feb. 7 with a 51-39 win against Aquinas, which was followed by regular season wins against Wellsville (49-41) and Our Lady of Mercy (49-41).
Sectional play started for the Kings with a 41-27 win over Caledonia-Mumford, followed by a 53-29 win over Perry in the quarterfinal round. They then scored a 51-48 win over Red Jacket in the semifinal round and a 51-38 win over Lyons to capture the title.
In state play, the Kings have scored wins against Mynderse (52-38), Keshequa (50-45) and a 64-47 win over Randolph to advance to the Class C Final Four.
The Kings never played a regular season game against a common or lower-class opponent, going 4-3 against Class AA schools, 0-2 against Class A schools and 6-5 against Class B schools. All seven games the team has played against Class C schools has been in the sectional or state rounds.
The Kings averaged 42.4 points over the season (51.7 in post-season), while giving up an average of 41.1 points in 2012-13 (38.9 post-season). They average 33.4 rebounds per game, along with 15.0 steals, 9.6 assists and 7.2 blocked shots.
The Kings are led by 5’10” senior forward Skyler Gausney-Jones, who averages 12.8 points to go with 8.1 rebounds and 5.0 steals per game. Sophomore 6’2” center Princella McCullough averages 8.8 points to go with 10.7 rebounds and three blocked shots per game, while 6’1” forward Emmanuella Edoka averages 7.6 points, 11.9 rebounds and 4.4 blocks.
Sophomore 5’9” guard Kharysma Bryant averages 7.7 points to go with 2.6 steals per game, while junior 5’6” guard Sheila Hawkes averages 5.3 points, 5.2 assists and 2.2 steals. Freshman 5’5” guard Arianne Smith adds 4.8 points and 3.7 steals, while junior 5’3” guard Gianna Mastrella averages 3.4 points.
You can listen to the NYSPHSAA Class C semifinals between AuSable Valley and Bishop Kearney live through our Spreaker Page, www.spreaker.com/user/keith_lobdell.