After having difficulty finding her shooting touch, Kelly Carey tried her luck closer to the hoop. The Holy Trinity senior made a move inside less than a minute into overtime for a game-changing three-point play.
"I cut to the basket because my shots weren't really falling in the second half," Carey said after Holy Trinity defeated Sacred Heart, 54-46, in overtime in the Nassau-Suffolk CHSAA girls basketball Class A state qualifying game Sunday at LIU Post. "My teammate found me and I went up strong and it happened to go in."
Said Holy Trinity coach John Scalfaro, "Kelly's done everything we've asked her to do. Normally a lot of these teams, they triangle-and-two, it's always Kelly and Katie. Today, when she only saw one player against her -- she likes that."
Alyson Brennan had 15 points, Katie Poppe 13 and Carey 10 for Holy Trinity (19-8), which will play Bishop Loughlin in the semifinals at 7 p.m. Friday at Cardinal Spellman.
Holy Trinity went on a 9-0 run to start overtime. Danielle DiGrazia sank a pair of baskets on outside jump shots -- with Carey's three-point play sandwiched in between -- and a basket by Mikaela Ryan (nine points) made the score 51-42.
"I've been working on that shot every day in practice all year long, so I knew it was my turn to step up," DiGrazia said. "When I got the ball, I just looked to the basket and knew it was my time and I wasn't going to go down without a fight."
The fourth quarter was tense as neither squad wanted its season to end. Jenna Pasquale (16 points) capped a 7-0 run that gave Sacred Heart a 42-40 lead with 3:52 to play. Brennan's two free throws with 2:14 to go tied the score at 42.
"I never really had it in my mind that we were going to lose," Carey said. "I never really got nervous; I had faith in my team."
The Titans went on a 14-0 run from midway through the first quarter to the 6:38 mark of the second to pull ahead 23-13. Sacred Heart (16-11) responded with an 11-1 run to tie the score at 24 late in the first half.
Poppe had 11 points in the first half for Holy Trinity, which led 26-25 at the break. Brennan scored eight of Holy Trinity's 12 points in the third quarter as the Titans clung to a 38-35 lead.