After getting elminated in the semifinals last season after winning five consecutive NSCHSAA championships, No. w St. John the Baptist will get the chance to make it six in seven seasons after beating No. 3 St. Anthony's, 47-39, in the semifinals today at C.W. Post.
Alexis Smith took an elbow to the left eye late in the first half and came out of the game. She returned in the second half and scored 14 of her 19 points, including nine in the final quarter.
SJB (15-10) will play No. 1 Kellenberg in the final at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Hofstra.
"We remembered that we want to be at Hofstra," Smith said. :It’s been a rocky road. We pulled together at the end and got the win."
SJB has 10 losses, but played a tough non-league schedule and had some injuries earlier in the season, including Smith, who missed time because of an ankle injury.
"It has helped bring us together," Christine Bosco said. "We played a difficult schedule, but I truly believes it pays off."
Bosco scored 11 and Brianna Thomas added seven points.
SJB led 10-7 after the first quarter and the Friars took a 22-21 lead at halftime. The Friars led 32-30 after three quarters before the lead changed hands a few times in the final quarter. Symone Kelly gave the Friars a 37-36 lead with 4:24 left. Kelly missed most of the second half after getting her fourth foul with 5:55 left in the third.
Smith gave SJB the lead for good with 3:22 left at 40-37.
Mimi Lizza's 11 points led St. Anthony's, who will play in a first-round CHSAA A state game Friday 7:45 p.m. at home.