Danielle Davis and the Central Catholic Saints open play in the Class 2A Regional on Tuesday. (Photo by B Corbin/You Name It Sports)
By Bryan Bloodworth
Central Catholic High School’s girls basketball team will be gunning for its 10th regional title in 11 years when it begins play tomorrow night in its own regional.
The only difference is the Saints will be playing for a Class 3A championship rather than Class 2A hardware.
A change in parameters by the IHSA during the summer to even the number of teams in each of the four classes throughout the state caused the shift. University High also was affected by the change, going from 2A to 3A.
“Unfortunately, we do get bumped up, but it is what it is,” said Central Catholic coach Debbie Coffman, whose team is ranked fifth in Class 3A with a 23-3 record. “The girls are playing hard.
“We have a pretty good schedule and have played a lot of 3A teams before, so hopefully we’ll do well. It’s a tough regional with a lot of wins coming into it.”
That might be an understatement.
Morton is seeded first with a 25-4 record, while No. 3 seed U High is 23-6 and fourth-seeded Washington has 19 wins.
Central Catholic, which won its fifth straight Corn Belt Conference title this year, will have the home court to its advantage.
“If you look at the records over the past few years, we’ve played well at home,” added Coffman. “Everyone has to come out and play hard, play good defense, rebound well and make free throws down the stretch. If you have one game where you don’t play well, you’re out.”
Meanwhile, El Paso-Gridley meets Illini West in Class 1A sectional play at Orion. The Titans are 26-1 and rated fifth in the state.
Bryan Bloodworth can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org