July 27, 2014

Bird soars as Pro-Am team wins

By Judy Richter

Playing the full 40 minutes, sophomore forward Erica “Bird” McCall led her South Bay team to an 82-72 victory over Golden State in a playoff game in the SF Bay Area Pro-Am women’s tournament at Kezar Pavilion in San Francisco on July 26.

Bird scored a team-high 33 points, according to my unofficial tally. Her Stanford teammate, guard Briana Roberson, contributed an unofficial 20 points. My tally doesn’t agree with the official scorekeeper’s, who was going by the players’ uniform numbers in the program, but those numbers bore little resemblance to reality.

South Bay led 40-33 at the half and stayed ahead most of the second half until Golden State pulled even at 65-65 with 5:08 to go. South Bay held a narrow edge until Briana iced the victory by hitting nine consecutive free throws, most after being intentionally fouled. She missed a 10th FT, but by then she had put the game in the bag.

The game was to have started at 1:30 p.m., but with six minutes to go, only two South Bay players had arrived. Golden State had six.

Traffic delays arrivals

So just before 1:30, the countdown clock was reset and stopped at 20 minutes. At 1:52 p.m., Bird and Briana arrived with another South Bay woman, so the clock started. About two minutes before the new tipoff, guard Markisha Coleman, ’07, and another SB player arrived. All had been delayed by heavy traffic.

Bird and Briana, who was at the point, started the game. Briana played most of the game, and Markisha saw lots of action, often at the point. She finished with an unofficial 2 points.

The game was hardly high caliber with lots of turnovers and missed chances on both sides, but some nifty plays by the two Stanford players might have been previews of coming attractions. Many of them involved quick assists by Briana to Bird as she soared toward the basket.

Fewer than a dozen Stanford fans were on hand to cheer the Cardinal women. Sophomore guard Lili Thompson, her parents, a brother and two nieces, ages 2 and 4, bolstered that cheering section.

Lili optimistic after surgery

Lili, who had surgery in the offseason, said her recuperation is going well. She hopes to be cleared to play by the time the new season starts.

South Bay will play Mission Rec at 1:30 p.m. Aug. 2. The winner of that game will play for the championship against Bay City at 2:30 p.m. Aug. 10.

Kezar Pavilion is at 755 Stanyan at Waller on the far east end of Golden Gate Park. Paid parking is available next door. Allow ample time for traffic.

No comments: