The speed and quickness of the North/West All-Stars was what decided the Chicago Public League Coaches Association’s Luther Bedford Girls All-Star Classic on Saturday at Young. North/West earned a 53-51 victory against a South/Central All-Star team with plenty of size and strength.
North/West held a 46-40 lead with 3:22 remaining in the second half when Elizabeth Toye showed the crowd why she will be playing for Wisconsin next year. Toye made two baskets and a free throw, grabbed three rebounds and blocked a shot in an 11-2 run that gave South/Central a 51-48 lead with 49 seconds remaining.
It looked as though the South/Central was in control when the North/West team unleashed a furious full court press, led by Marshall’s Tierra Roberts, who made a steal and an assist to Danisha Magette to cut the lead to 51-50 with 32 seconds remaining. Another press forced the South/Central to take an errant shot that was again grabbed by Roberts, allowing the North/West team to set up their final play: a four corner spread with North Lawndale point guard Jamaria Williams running the show from the point. Williams used a crossover dribble and a spin move to get to the basket for an And-One to give her team a 53-51 lead with six seconds remaining.
“We forced them to play faster than they wanted to down the stretch,” Williams said. “When we got the rebound we knew we were going to spread the floor. I heard the coach say ‘go’ and I knew it was my job to break them down and get to the basket or kick it to one of my teammates. All I did was my job and we got the win.”
Roberts had a team-high 15 points and Magette finished with 12.
Deja Dickens led three South/Central players with 17. Brittany Bird scored 13 and Toye finished with 12.
Game 1 was a low-scoring affair with North/West winning 25-22 behind Jayria Hicks’ eight points. South/Central’s Kiyonna Wilson led all scorers with nine.