Another local side that went to the Class AA semifinals a year ago, Christian Brothers Academy, opened on Friday, but took a 52-41 loss to Westhill.
With just one starter (Ellen Voorheis) gone from last season’s 15-5 squad, the Brothers fully expected to fare well, even against a strong Westhill squad that also has four returning starters.
However, CBA struggled from the start trying to solve the Warriors’ 1-3-1 matchup zone defense, and its outside shots did not fall, either, leading to a 21-14 halftime deficit.
Sparked by baskets from Marisa Romeo and Kelsey Johnson, CBA used an 8-0 run late in the third quarter to tie it, 27-27, only to have Westhill zoom back in front and stay there, led by Anna Ross, as the sophomore piled up 15 points, nine rebounds, six steals and five assists.
Romeo, before fouling out, had 11 points, while Johnson and Alyssa Pitonzo managed 10 points apiece. Ross was one of four Westhill players in double figures as Sam Peebles, Kelly Mascari (12 points each) and Gwen Dougherty (11 points) lined up just behind Ross.