NEW YORK – For the first time this season – perhaps the first time in two years – the Gonzaga Prep girls basketball team didn’t finish.
Possessing a five-point lead with under three minutes to play, Gonzaga Prep missed shots it normally makes and committed two costly turnovers in the final minute as Miami Country Day prevailed 60-59 in the Dick’s Sporting Goods/ESPN national high school tournament Friday morning at Christ the King High School.
The two-time state champion Bullpups’ extended season ends at 27-1 after their 50-game winning streak was snapped in a game broadcast on ESPNU.
“We’ve been very fortunate in that area for a long time,” G-Prep coach Mike Arte said of end-game situations. “We weren’t as fortunate the last three minutes as we were the last couple of years. They may have had more athletes but we were the better basketball team.”
The Spartans trailed 53-48 after G-Prep’s Laura Stockton made a basket. But sophomore Kelsey Marshall took over, scoring eight of Miami Country Day’s final 12 points, including a 3-pointer that tied the score at 55 with 1:26 remaining.
Stockton hit both ends of a one-and-one at 1:17 to give the Bullpups their last lead at 57-55.
G-Prep had a final possession, trailing 60-57. But a contested 3-point shot hit the backboard. With the clock under two seconds, Molly McDermott got the rebound and made a 5-footer at the buzzer.
University of Oregon-bound Otiona Gildon had a big game for the Bullpups, scoring a team-high 26 points to go with a season-high 19 rebounds. Stockton, though hampered by foul trouble in the fourth quarter, had 16 points, seven assists, five rebounds, four steals.
The Spartans frequently pressured full court before dropping into a 2-3 zone. The Bullpups struggled at state against a 2-3 zone but Friday got plenty of open shots, though they had difficulty converting at times. G-Prep shot 37 percent (22 of 60).
“We went out and competed very hard even when things weren’t going our way. I’m very proud of them,” Arte said. “This experience has been amazing. They’re upset that they lost. They’re competitors. They’re mad at themselves. From a team standpoint, this has been a wonderful experience. It was an honor to be invited.”
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