Texas recruits Rellah Boothe, Chasity Patterson lift East in McDonald's All American Game
CHICAGO -- For the second year in a row, the top seniors in the nation gave us a little something extra. Not only did the McDonald's All American Girls Game go to overtime once again, but there were also some extra special performances Wednesday night.
The East rallied and won the annual showcase 80-74, and these six players won some new admirers.
Rellah Boothe, Texas: Let's just say the Longhorns are smiling. The No. 3 prospect out of IMG Academy in Florida showed off all that is good in her game. The versatile 6-foot-3 forward had 18 points, including four 3-pointers, and nine rebounds. She competed hard on both ends of the floor and led the late-game charge for the East, which trailed by as many as 13 points in the third quarter. Boothe scored 16 of her points in the second half.
Chasity Patterson, Texas: Before the game even started, the 5-6 Patterson out of North Shore in Houston showed why she is one of the country's most capable scorers. Patterson had the hot hand on Monday night and won the Powerade Jam Fest 3-point contest by putting together a jaw-dropping streak. The lightning-quick and top-ranked point guard in the class had 14 points, including two 3-pointers, in the main event Wednesday night. She also had six assists, including some big dishes in overtime, to help seal the East's win. Patterson scored 10 of her points in the first half before handing off the scoring duty to her future Longhorns teammate. Did we mention that the Longhorns are smiling? And, if you're keeping score in Texas, the West squad had five players from the Lone Star State, and they scored 31 of the 74 points. Patterson was the lone Texas rep on the East.
Loretta Kakala, Louisville: Did you see this, Jeff Walz? The 6-3 center made her presence known. In pretty much no time at all. Kakala, out of California's Manteca High School, scored 11 points and grabbed six rebounds in just 15 minutes on the court for the West. She delivered inside the key as well as facing up. We'll make this quick: She was the most efficient performer in the game.
Evina Westbrook, Tennessee: Before the game, the future player for the Lady Vols was named the winner of the Morgan Wootten Award, which is given annually to the McDonald's All American who best exhibits outstanding character, leadership and the values of a student-athlete in the classroom and the community. In Chicago, she showed her value on the basketball court. The 6-foot guard out of South Salem (Oregon) had 10 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists for the West. She was superb in transition, finding her teammates for easy buckets.
Janelle Bailey, North Carolina: We're just going to come out and say it. Bailey has "double-double" written all over her at the next level. Tar Heels, rejoice! Bailey played only 11 minutes Wednesday, but she helped keep the East within striking distance with a strong first quarter. All told, she finished with seven rebounds and four points.
Megan Walker, Connecticut: It was a relatively quiet night (at least by her standards) for the No. 1 prospect in the nation out of Monacan in Virginia. Walker, the Gatorade national player of the year and the Naismith player of the year, was just 1-for-7 in the first half. But as is often the case, she had a big hand in the outcome. Up by three in the final minute of overtime, Walker hit a pull-up jumper to give the East a 77-72 lead and pretty much seal the win. She finished with 13 points and five rebounds. Walker and her high school team went undefeated this season en route to the state title. She kept her perfect senior record intact at the McDonald's game.