Hazelwood East Girls Are Seeded 2nd At Fort Zumwalt North Tourney

By Jim Wieners

Hazelwood East Girls Basketball attempts to successfully defend their title at the Fort Zumwalt North Invitational, in O’Fallon, Mo., beginning Monday, Dec. 10, as the number two seed.

East will play Suburban North Conference rival and number seven seed McCluer at 6:30. Prior to that game the host team and number three seed Fort Zumwalt North, who was second to East last year, takes on number six seed Orchard Farm at 5 p.m. With two gymnasiums next to each other the winners play each other Dec. 12 at 6:30, likely in the upper or main gym at the same time the losers will likely meet in the lower gym.

Meanwhile, top-seeded Lutheran-St. Charles County, who just won their own tournament last week, takes on number eight seed Riverview Gardens Dec. 10 at 5 p.m. and at 6:30 number four seed Hazelwood West battles number five seed North Tech in a battle of teams that played in the 2010 championship game won by North Tech. On Dec. 12 at 5 p.m. the winners of those two games will likely play in the upper gym while the two losers will likely play in the lower gym.

On Dec. 14 in the upper or main gym the tournament championship will be played at 6:30 after the 5 p.m. third-place game. On the same night in the lower gym the seventh-place game will be at 5 p.m. followed by the consolation title game at 6:30.

HAZELWOOD EAST opened the season last week with a pair of home wins, 44-39 over Visitation Academy and 77-18 over Maplewood-Richmond Heights. Hazelwood East and Visitation are competing this week in the Nerinx Hall Invitational, which began Dec. 3 and ends Dec. 6 with the 7 p.m. championship game. McCLUER SOUTH-BERKELEY is also at Nerinx Hall. East, on Dec. 7 at 5:30 p.m., takes on former Suburban North rival Normandy.

McCLUER opened the season this week with a pair of 5:30 home games, Dec. 4 against University City and Dec. 6 against Jennings. HAZELWOOD WEST lost 67-44 Nov. 28 at Westminster Christian Academy, a team that defeated Hazelwood East 65-47 in the Dec. 3 game at Nerinx Hall, while West played Dec. 4 at Lafayette. NORTH TECH opened Nov. 26 with a 51-6 rout of Sumner while losing 55-31 Nov. 29 at Whitfield and has a Dec. 6 5:30 game at RIVERVIEW GARDENS, their season opener.

INCARNATE WORD WINS TROY INVITATIONAL IN DOMINATING FASHON – The 25 Annual Troy Trojan Pepsi Cola Invitational, Nov. 27-Dec. 1 was dominated by Incarnate Word Academy as the Red Knights outscored their three opponents 225-74 in wins over Fort Zumwalt East, 96-20, St. Dominic, 69-31, and Eureka, 60-23.  The championship game win over Eureka was coached by Kris Lovette, who filled in while Dan Rolfes was attending the funeral for his father — who died on Thanksgiving weekend prior to the IWAs season-opening win, 59-56  Nov. 24, over Hoover, Ala., in Murphysboro, Tenn.

IWA broke two records set by Troy Buchanan in 1988. The 96 points over Fort Zumwalt East shattered the 79 points by Troy in a 1988 win over Bowling Green while the 225 points in the tournament shattered the mark of 192 set by Troy in 1998.

Sophomore Napheeesa Collier scored 82 points in the tournament (35 against Fort Zumwalt East and 29 against Eureka), had 13 steals, 36 rebounds (12 each against Fort Zumwalt East, St. Dominic and Eureka) and six blocked shots. Nakiah Bell had 13 assists.

Assistant coach John Sheridan, who spoke for Lovette because he had to leave for another game, said the tournament this week was difficult because of the death of Rolfes’ father and the team attended the funeral Dec. 1, prior to the championship game. “This tournament is how the team got together,” Sheridan said.

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