A year after losing in the state championship, the Bishop Kelly High girls basketball team will return for a shot at redemption after beating Twin Falls 33-30 in overtime in the semifinals of the 4A state tournament.
The championship game provides also provides another chance at redemption as the Knights (20-7) will face Middleton (20-6), which beat Bishop Kelly last week for the District Three title.
“I’m excited as heck for our girls to be able to get back there,” said Bishop Kelly coach Derek McCormick, who was diagnosed with leukemia a month after last year’s title game. “It’s been a long year, so just to be able to get back is pretty awesome.”
McCormick jokingly called Friday’s semifinal “the worst game in 4A history” as both teams shot 19 percent from the floor and combined for 42 turnovers.
But Bishop Kelly came up with the defensive stops when it needed them, and sophomore Olivia Kent drained 3-of-6 free throws in overtime to seal the Knights’ third trip to the Idaho Center in five years.
“I’m so excited,” said Kent, who admitted her arms shook as she raised for her free throws. “I really think we’re going to go in there, and we can do it. We’re going to come in with more motivation and we’re going to play so hard.”
Theresa Reeping led the Knights with nine points, Monica Behrend added six points and Lydia Nieto added five points and seven rebounds.
Kennedi Evans led Twin Falls with a double-double of 10 points and 13 rebounds.