DON KETCHUM is a native of Phoenix. He was a sportswriter for The Arizona Republic/The Phoenix Gazette for nearly four decades. He covered high school sports on several occasions as well as the Arizona Diamondbacks, Arizona Cardinals and Arizona State sports. From 2008-14, he was a staff writer for, the web site of the Arizona Interscholastic Association.

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Three-pointers power Gators to hoops victory

 What do you get when you combine a meteorologist with a hoopsologist?

The answer came on Monday night (Dec. 6) at Xavier Prep’s Activity Center.

There was a big cloudburst and it rained 3-pointers.

XCP’s basketball team connected on 11 of the long-range shots and coasted to an 85-22 victory over Phoenix North in a game that went to a running clock in the fourth period after Xavier’s lead reached past the required 30 points.

So Xavier continued its hot start by winning its third game in as many tries. The Gators fill out the rest of this week with road games at Phoenix Pinnacle (9-1) on Thursday night (Dec. 9) and Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor on Friday night (Dec. 10). O’Connor (2-1) was set to face defending 6A Conference state champion Surprise Valley Vista on Wednesday night (Dec. 8).

The treys were pretty much balanced across the board, with three in the first, two in the second, four in the third and two in the fourth.

Xavier had seven players connect on the threes. Sophomore Dom Nesland had three, sophomores Sarah Miller and Josie Alilonu had two each and junior Sienna Cherwinski, freshman Lucy Sanford and sophomores Juliet Botiller and Aniyah Roberson had one apiece.

Four Gators scored in double figures – Nesland and Miller (17 each), Cherwinski (13) and Alilonu (11).

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