REAL MCCOY: BARNEGAT STANDOUT GRABS MVP IN SENIOR ALL-STAR GAME
TOMS RIVER - Shannon McCoy came to RWJBarnabas Health Arena like all the rest of the those participating in the Shore Conference Basketball Coaches Association's Senior All-Star Game, looking to have a good time.
But, their was a discreet chip on the shoulders of the 5-10 Barnegat guard. In her modest yet confident style, McCoy came to make a point. Actually, quite a few of them.
"I walked in like this was just going to be another game but for fun," said McCoy. "It's the last game of my high-school career. We don't get the chance to play teams like Red Bank Catholic, Manasquan or St. John Vianney, but to experience playing with and against girls from those teams, who are the talk of girls basketball in New Jersey, was something cool."
What wasn't cool was McCoy's touch. From the outset, she exhibited all the fruits of her labor that landed her a spotamong the elite seniors in the Shore and went above and beyond behind a sizzling stroke.
McCoy buried her first four shots, including three from beyond the arc, en route to a game-high 19 points and MVP honors to lead the East to a 98-80 victory over the West.
McCoy, who was a Third Team All-Shore selection by the Shore Sports Network, put the finishing touches on a career that saw her exit Barnegat as the school's all-time leading scorer with 1,402 points. This winter, she clicked for 21.9 points, 9.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.4 steals per game and showed off her skill in those areas. But, it was the splash she made from the arc, sinking five triples that shed light on her range, which yielded 69 treys this season for the Bengals (18-10).
Her output should come as no surprise. McCoy thrived in the spotlight, exemplified in the NJSIAA South Jersey, Group 2 quarterfinals, when she calmly sank two decisive free throws with a tenth of a second left in regulation to lift seventh-seeded Barnegat past second-seeded Cinnaminson, 47-46.
"It was definitely nerve wracking," McCoy, who is heading to Kean, said of the dramatic conclusion. "That was the most stressful final minute of my life but for some reason, I stayed calm. Those are the moments I live for. I love that."
She also loved confirming her worth against peers Monday night, dropping 11 points in the first half.
Bridget Andree of Trinity Hall, another Third Team All-Shore selection, shined for the West, depositing 12 points. Andree was a major factor in the Monarchs putting together a 20-5 record that included a 14-2 showing in B Central, with both losses coming at the hands of Non-Public A state champion St. Rose.
"It was a great opportunity and a really nice experience," said Andree, who, like McCoy, found her stroke early, sinking her first three shots on confident drives to the rim. "I enjoyed playing with some of the best players in the Shore Conference."
Andree, the younger sister of former CBA star and current Lehigh freshman Pat Andree, was a force for Trinity Hall, averaging 17.5 points and nine boards a contest. She finished her career with the Monarchs with 22 points and 15 rebounds in a 68-61 loss to the Patrick School in the South Jersey, Non-Public B quarterfinals.
"Every time I get on the court, I played my hardest and don't think about who I'm playing against," said Andree, who is heading to Notre Dame to pursue her academic endeavors.
Hayley Moore of Red Bank Catholic won the 3-point shooting contest over Angelique Gathers of Long Branch. The Binghampton-bound guard sank 10 in the final. But, more importantly, Moore got to share the floor one final time with Casey teammates Rose Caverly (Vermont) and Katie Rice (Lehigh).
The trio came into RBC together as freshmen and will depart with a cumulative four-year record of 94-23, including a Non-Public A state title in 2017.
"We've been playing together for so long," noted Moore, who scored eight points for the West. "To play together one last time is the perfect ending."
"It's bittersweet," added Rice, who scored 11 points for the West. "For one last time, we weren't looking to the future and just enjoying the now."
"When I get an outlet, I automatically look for Katie or Hayley running the floor," said Caverly, who dropped in a team-high 16 points. "Of course, we all want to win the game because we're so used to winning. But, it's also so much fun. We all know each other. It was one last experience and I'm so thankful they did this for us."
Christina Antonakakis 2-1-0-7; Jess Broad 3-1-1-10; Shauna Bruker 1-0-0-2; Madison Doring 5-1-1-14; Sarah Furch 4-1-0-11; Angelique Gathers 0-2-0-6; Rachel Gazzola 2-1-0-7; Kerry Tanke 5-0-0-10; Tori Hyduke 0-0-0-0; Amanda Johnson 1-0-0-2; Caliegh McAnuff 0-1-0-3; Shannon McCoy 2-5-0-19; Briyannah Richardson 1-0-0-2; Bridget Tobin 0-0-0-0; Kiera Williams 2-0-0-4; Dara Mabrey 0-0-0-0.
Bridget Andree 6-0-0-12; Melissa Buxton 3-0-0-6; Tara Casuccio 1-0-0-2; Rose Caverly 7-0-2-16; Molly Collins 2-0-0-4; Lauren Cruse 0-0-0-0; Emily Donzanti 1-0-0-2; Sarah Hughes 0-0-0-0; Lauren Karabin 2-0-0-4; Lovin Marsicano 2-0-0-4; Hayley Moore 1-2-0-8; Sydney Pryzgoda 2-0-1-5; Katie Rice 4-1-0-11; Breanna Jackson 0-0-0-0; Cara Volpe 3-0-0-6.