Howard leads Fontbonne JV to playoffs as second seed

Fontbonne 62 St. Edmund Prep 34

Having starred in CYO basketball for St. Patrick’s Parish’s eighth grade team, Fontbonne freshman Jill Howard is no stranger to leading a team by example and also in scoring. After beating St. Edmund Prep 62-34, led by their freshman standout, the 11-3 Bonnies locked into second place for this week’s upcoming playoffs.

Finishing up their last big game on Senior Night against St. Edmund Prep, Winter Charles shone for the Bonnies with a season-high 22 points, as Allie Bartholomeo and Howard scored 16 points apiece. Ryan Carlton scored seven points from the point guard position as Shannon Greene led on defense and scored four points.

In large measure, Howard has been responsible for the Bonnies’ success this season as the freshman forward has carried the team with an average of 20-plus points a game. “She scores quick and she’s fast,” said Fontbonne JV Coach Anthony Bartholomeo. “She’s been a pleasure to coach this season.”

Coach Bartholomeo explained that his stellar freshman is always willing to learn and has only gotten better as the season has progressed. “She takes what she learns in practice and then applies it to the game. That’s the sign of a good player,” said the 10-year JV coach.

Recalling great basketball teams of the past, Barthololmeo calls this year’s JV team his own “Fab Five,” a reference to the 1992 Michigan Wolverine team that featured a dominant freshman lineup that included eventual NBA stars Chris Webber, Jalen Rose and Juwan Howard. With the exception of starting sophomore forward Shannon Greene, the JV consists of all freshman starters that complement Howard including Charles at center, and Bartholomeo and Carlton at the guard position.

Looking ahead to this weekend’s playoffs, Coach Bartholomeo is optimistically projecting to reach the finals to play first seeded and undefeated (14-0) McClancy. Noting that his team is more than ready to take down the team that only beat it by four points just a few weeks ago, Bartholomeo stated that he has been preparing with some new offensive strategies for this possible championship match-up.

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