This final edition of the Fast Fact in 2019 focuses on the weird history of our local girls basketball teams and the state tournament, presented by BMO Harris Bank.
When it comes to Naperville area teams in the State girls basketball tournament, good things come in pairs. We’ve had three programs make it down state in the 40 plus year history of the IHSA tournament, the interesting thing is that each time a school has made it to state, they made it back again the following year. The Neuqua Valley girls first punched their ticket back in 2001, an impressive feat considering it was just their third season as a varsity program. The Wildcats finished as the state runner up in class 2A. Then in 2002, Neuqua made it back down to ISU and took home the third place trophy over Lake Zurich.
It was Naperville Central’s turn in 2003 as the Redhawks went 35-0 and won the state championship over Fenwick behind one of the best high school players of all time, Candace Parker. Central made it back to back titles in 2004 after a championship game win over New Trier.
Earlier this decade, Benet Academy won its first ever state girls championship in class 4A. The Redwings dismantled Fremd to win the 2015 title. The following season BA faced Fremd again in the final, where 2016 Ms. Basketball Kathleen Doyle put the game on ice as Benet won a 2nd straight championship by the score of 42-39.
Last season, Benet Academy made it back to state, bringing home the 4th place trophy. Can the Redwings keep this intriguing streak alive? We’ll have to see, but they are 10-0 to start the 2019-20 season…
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