Sunday, February 23, 2014

Brittany Leads Mount Rainer to Victories

TJ COTTERILL,, February 23, 2014
Mount Rainier 61, Todd Beamer 41: Stanford-bound Brittany McPhee scored 16 of her game-high 33 points, and the No. 6 Rams turned a 35-30 lead before the end of the third quarter into a 20-point victory against the No. 3 Titans.
“We have been in that position before and teams came back on us,” McPhee said. “I was just like, ‘Someone has got to take over and finish this off.’ ”
The senior helped the Rams win their third consecutive West Central/Southwest bidistrict title.

Todd Milles,, February 21, 2014
Mount Rainier 65, Skyview 61: The Rams and Brittany McPhee are certainly used to the high stakes of playing for a district title.
Led by the early hot shooting of Emily Fiso (half of her 16 points in the first quarter, and the closing of McPhee (23 points), Mount Rainier (21-3) will play in its fourth consecutive WCD championship game Saturday at PLU.
After losing the first year to Federal Way in the 2011 finals, the Rams have won the past two — in a rematch with the Eagles in 2012, and last season against Beamer.
“It definitely means a lot,” McPhee said. “But more it is looking forward to state — a stepping stone to state.”

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Kaylee and Natrona County basketball avoids distractions to retire home court in style

jeffkirshman,, February 21, 2014
All day, Kaylee Johnson had avoided making a fuss. The Natrona County senior had rejected questions of nostalgia and longing from her classmates as the final home game of her high school basketball career neared with the completion of every passing class period. She’d miss her teammates and playing on Jerry Dalton Court, sure, but senior night, she had convinced herself, was just another game.
Thursday was doubly nostalgic because of the closing of the Orange Dungeon – the home of Natrona County basketball games since 1929 – which will be revamped later in the year as part of the school’s scheduled rebuilding project. Johnson and the Fillies defeated visiting Riverton 84-39 in the girls game earlier in the night.
“And then I got to the gym and I saw coach just staring off and I was like, ‘It is already here.’ All of a sudden it just hit me and I got all emotional,” said Johnson, who will attend Stanford next year on a full-ride athletic scholarship. “Then we walked out and I started crying. I did not want to do that. But after you think about how this is the last chance that I have, it really does get you hyped up and makes you want to give it everything you have.”
While the Fillies, who haven't lost a conference game in nearly three years, are focused on winning a championship.
There are always going to be distractions – Peach Basket, regionals, state. That’s all coming up. Those are going to be huge distractions, so this was perfect practice,” Johnson said.
Johnson scored 15 for the Fillies.

Taylor and GSB Roll to Wins

Simeon Pincus,, February 22, 2014
This year, the Knights are proving to be just as dominant but are proving they can inflict pain from more than just their starting five.The Gill St. Bernard’s High School girls basketball team wrote a great story last season, winning the Somerset County Tournament championship despite a roster that featured just seven players.
While Gill St. Bernard’s got its customary effort from Stanford-bound senior and reigning Courier News Girls Basketball Player of the Year Taylor Rooks,  the Knights got it done with a little help from some uncustomary sources, as well.That was certainly the case Saturday, as top-seeded Gill St. Bernard’s put on an impressive display against a very good Rutgers Prep squad, with the top-seeded and two-time defending champ Knights scoring a 74-47 victory over the fourth-seeded Argonauts at Montgomery High School.Gill St. Bernard’s barely missed a beat, even with Rooks struggling from the field early in the contest.

While Rooks got it together midway through the second quarter and finished with a game-high 26 points to go with eight rebounds.
“We’re in a pretty good place right now,” said Gill St. Bernard’s coach Josuf Dema, whose team will face second-seeded Franklin for the title at 1 p.m. Saturday at Franklin High School. “The girls know what’s expected of them day in and day out. We were a little short today, but girls step up. Taylor missed a couple of shots and had some foul trouble early, but she did other things to help us in the game, like making a great pass, playing D or getting a rebound. “I wouldn’t say there’s a script,” Rooks said. “We’re just trying to come out and play as hard as we can. We want to make the championship game and win it.”, February 20, 2014
Taylor Rooks scored 28 points to lead Gill St. Bernard's, No. 2 in The Star-Ledger Top 20, to a 74-46 victory over Watchung Hills in Warren., February 15, 2014
Taylor Rooks scored 29 points and had 10 rebounds to lead top seed Gill St. Bernard's to an 81-38 victory over Montgomery in the quarterfinal round of the Somerset County Tournament in Gladstone.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Taylor Rooks of Gill St. Bernard's records her 1,000th career rebound

Taylor Rooks (center) goes up for a layup during a game against Franklin earlier this season.

Chris Ryan,, February12, 2014

After reaching one milestone earlier this season, Taylor Rooks added another to her resume at the end of last month.
The forward grabbed her 1,000th career rebound during Gill St. Bernard's 66-69 victory against Rancocas Valley on Jan. 25. The Stanford-bound senior now stands at 1,087 career rebounds.
Rooks entered that game against Rancocas Valley one rebound shy of 1,000, and she finished with 15 in the victory. The win helped propel Gill St. Bernard's to No. 2 in The Star-Ledger Top 20, and the team remains at that ranking with a 17-2 record.
Rooks, the reigning Star-Ledger State Player of the Year, has once again put together a strong season. She leads the team at 24.6 points and 11.3 rebounds per game.
Earlier this season, she surpassed the 2,000 point mark.

Taylor's other recent game updates:, February 11, 2014
Taylor Rooks had 27 points, six rebounds and five assists to lead Gill St. Bernard's, No. 2 in The Star-Ledger Top 20, to an 80-45 victory over Watchung Hills in Gladstone., February 6, 2014
Taylor Rooks scored 34 points to lead Gill St. Bernard's to an 82-42 victory over Hillsborough in Hillsborough., february 4, 2014
Taylor Rooks scored 19 points to lead Gill St. Bernard's, No. 2 in The Star-Ledger Top 20, to a 60-40 victory over Hunterdon Central in Flemington.

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Taylor's Leads GSB to Wins, February 1, 2014
Taylor Rooks scored 29 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead Gill St. Bernard's, No. 2 in The Star-Ledger Top 20, over Life Center, 62-57, in Burlington Township., January 30, 2014
Taylor Rooks registered 18 points and 12 rebounds to lead Gill St. Bernard's, No. 2 in The Star-Ledger Top 20, to a 70-28 victory over Immaculata in Gladstone., Janaury 28, 2014
Gill St. Bernard’s 74, Bridgewater-Raritan 62: Taylor Rooks dropped 25 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, and Gill St. Bernard’s won its ninth straight.

Kaylee and Natrona County rolls to easy victory against Rock Springs

Jack Nowlin,, February 1, 2014
The Fillies then used their full-court pressure to hold Rock Springs without a field goal until the final minute of the first half on their way to a 69-30 victory Saturday at NC's Jerry Dalton Court.
Johnson, who leads the state in scoring, rebounding, assists and blocked shots, finished with 16 points.
"There's a reason Kaylee leads the state in assists," Diehl said. "She's great to have in the middle of the floor because she can look over the defense, and she has a nice release. 
The Stanford-bound senior made her presence felt early as she either scored or assisted on the Fillies' first five baskets. She had seven assists for the game, often throwing over the top of the Rock Springs press for easy layups.