SAN JOSE — The Archbishop Mitty girls basketball team is loaded with size. The Monarchs have seven 6-footers on their 12-player roster, more than some college teams.
On Wednesday they used their size advantage to optimal benefit in a 65-45 win over Sacred Heart Cathedral.
Mitty, No. 2 in the Bay Area News Group girls basketball rankings, outrebounded SHC 50-20 and didn’t allow a single offensive rebound over the first two quarters while racing to a 35-14 lead at halftime.
“We do have a lot of length,” Mitty coach Sue Phillips said. “We try to utilize that length defensively in the full court and half court. I thought we were really good defensively in the first half, holding them to 14 points. We got complacent in the second half. Give them credit for sticking with it and knocking down some shots.”
It was the West Catholic Athletic League home opener for Mitty (11-2, 2-0). Among the fans rooting the Monarchs on was former Mitty standout and current Stanford star Haley Jones, who accommodated some young fans with photo requests at halftime.
Elle Hanson led Mitty with 18 points, knocking down four 3-pointers. McKenna Woliczko, a 6-2 freshman, had 16 points and 11 rebounds, continuing the impressive start to her varsity career.
“We’re a work in progress,” Phillips said. “We’ll continue to keep making strides and someday hope to have our entire roster available.”
Morgan Cheli, Mitty’s leading scorer and rebounder last season as a sophomore, sat out with an injury. She is a 6-2 guard with offers from Stanford, among others.
“She’s day to day,” said Phillips, who declined to specify the nature of the injury. “What’s most important is her long-term health.”
Belle Bramer, a transfer from Los Gatos, also didn’t play due to an eligibility issue.
But what Mitty had at its disposal Wednesday was plenty enough to register a decisive victory over a Sacred Heart Cathedral team ranked No. 5 in the BANG Top 20.
“Their physicality was the big difference,” SHC coach Demetrius Jackson said. “We have a lot of smaller guards. And when they were able to lean on them like that and be physical, it takes steam out of you. They were able to impose their will.”
The only previous loss for SHC (12-2, 1-1), pretty clearly the second-best team in the WCAL, was by a five-point margin to Salesian. The Fightin’ Irish came in with noteworthy wins over San Ramon Valley and Carondelet.
“Mitty was everything we thought they were,” Jackson said. “The main thing we learned was about physicality, that if we’re going to compete in the postseason we’re going to have to learn to handle that.”
Lefty guard Reza Po led SHC with 18 points, 14 in the final nine minutes of the game.
Mitty was 11 of 14 at the foul line. SHC missed all six free throws it attempted.