Welcome to a new season of high school girls basketball. Here is the latest installment of the Super 7. Check back every Thursday or Friday for updates and every week in the Daily Times sports section.
1. Garnet Valley (4-0)
Yes, a public school team takes over as the No. 1 team for the first time in a long while.
This is a very, very good team. With four starters back from last winter’s Central League championship run, the Jags are in prime position to repeat. Sisters Maddie and Jordan Ireland, and wing Macy Goldbach, are off to a torrid start.
Leading Scorer: Maddie Ireland, 16.3 ppg.
2. Cardinal O’Hara (3-0)
The youngest team in Delco is arguably the best. Loaded with sophomores and freshmen, the Lions are going to compete for Catholic League championships for the next three years. They could be ready to win it all this year. This is a team to watch.
Leading Scorer: Hannah Nihill, 16.6 ppg.
3. Bonner-Prendergast (2-1)
The Pandas incurred some terrible luck before the season began. First, they prepared to play without junior Princess Clemons, who tore an ACL and is out for the year.
But, in a scrimmage days before the winter sports season was to commence, two-time All-Delco and Saint Joseph’s-bound senior Alyssa Monaghan suffered a high ankle injury and will not return until mid-January. So, Life without Alyssa hasn’t been too bad. They don’t begin the meat of their schedule, against the really tough Catholic League teams (Wood, Neumann-Goretti, Carroll, O’Hara) until next month. The hope is Monaghan will be ready for those big games.. For the betterment of Delco and Catholic League girls basketball, let’s hope.
Amber Ballinger and La Salle-bound forward Shalina Miller have done a good job picking up the slack.
Leading Scorer: Shalina MIller, 15.7 ppg.
4. Episcopal Academy (4-1)
Winners of three in a row, EA’s statement victory — if there is such a thing two weeks into the season — was a 44-42 victory over Archbishop Carroll. This is an exciting team with a lot of potential. Sophomore forward Elodie Furey seems to be primed for a big year. Maria Kilcullen, Meghan Pickell, Dylan Higgins and Margaux Paolino give the Churchmen plenty of scoring balance.
Leading Scorer: Elodie Furey, 10.4 ppg.
5. Archbishop Carroll (3-2)
The Patriots probably deserve better treatment in this week’s Super 7. They’re more experienced than Bonner-Prendie and O’Hara, and last year defeated Garnet Valley team with essentially the same team.
Alas, the Patriots lost to EA last week (albeit by two points), so they fall to No. 5.
Senior guard Julia Gantz has seen her scoring average spike in the early going, which is great news for a Carroll team that can be hit-or-miss in the shooting department. All-Delco guard Lexi Stover is as solid as they come.
Leading Scorer: Julia Gantz, 15.8 ppg.
6. Radnor (4-1)
The reigning District Class AAA champions are now a Class AAAA program and are off to a great start. What Radnor has is good coaching (Mark Jordan) and a solid core of experienced players. They have a shooter (Lauren Pacifico), a point guard (Katie Jordan) and one very good big (Kristin Hamill). Ninetty-five percent of teams in Delco would consider that a luxury.
Leading Scorer: Kristin Hamill, 10.8 ppg.
7. Notre Dame (2-2)
Maybe I’m more bullish on the Irish than most, but I think they have a legitmate chance at taking the Inter-Ac by surprise. You can never fault coach Mary Beth McNichol’s team for playing a light schedule, that’s for sure. They were No. 7 in my preseason Super 7 (one spot behind Penn Wood) and then went out and defeated Penn Wood on opening night. It’s a rebuilding team that is making slow and steady progress.
Leading Scorer: Alex Kane, 16.0 ppg.
Honorable Mention: Haverford (4-1), Marple Newtown (3-2), Penn Wood (2-2…but not all games were reported to Daily Times), Strath Haven (5-0), Sun Valley (4-1).