Michael Stringer photo/Telegraph Journal

Magee surpasses 1,000 career points

by SCOTT BRIGGS - Tuesday, January 27, 2015

This article is courtesy of TELEGRAPH-JOURNAL

SJHS star Kathryn Magee joins her father as a member of high school basketball's 1,000-point club

Positioned on the sidelines in front of her team's bench, Kathryn Magee made an inbound pass to teammate Shania Graham with just under nine minutes left in the game.

Graham barely had possession of the basketball before giving it back to Ma-gee, who planted her feet and drained a three-pointer from the corner. The clutch triple gave Magee 1,002 career points en route to helping her Saint John High School Greyhounds to a 67-64 win over the Sussex Regional Sonics Saturday at Harbour Station.

Magee and Megan Stewart scored 14 points apiece for the Greyhounds, while Graham added 10. Lauren Flemming led Sussex with 14 points, while Reese Baxendale and Kennedy Baird each had 11.

The Sonics led the girls AAA contest 46-44 after three quarters. That was before Magee hit two corner threes and made two foul shots in the final frame.

Shortly after the final buzzer, the Greyhounds retreated to their locker room and applauded the Grade 12 shooting guard for reaching her milestone. Her team presented her with a plaque for joining the 1,000-point club.

"I'm really excited right now and we just beat Sussex," Magee said."That's a big accomplishment for us."

Her first three, the one that put her over 1,000 points, came with 8:43 left in regulation. Not long after, Greyhounds head coach Bill Mayberry pulled Magee off the court. He put his arm around her while revealing the significance of her shot.

"I actually had no idea how close I was," she said. "I thought about it this morning, but never thought anything of it, and then my coach pulled me off."

Magee's parents, Chris and Ann, along with her grandparents, were on hand for the special occasion. Chris scored 1,205 points in his hoops career at Kennebecasis Valley High School, where he was teammates with May-berry.

"It just shows you the apple doesn't fall far from the tree," Mayberry said. "Kathryn has been a joy to coach for three years. You like to remember them all, but she's one of those special kids that comes along every once in a while."

Before Magee became a standout with the Greyhounds, Chris was her coach. The father-daughter tandem were together through the minor ranks, including puppy, junior-mini, mini and bantam. She eventually landed at SJHS, making the varsity team in Grade 10.

"I was the youngest on the team, but my teammates were all really welcoming," Magee recalled. "I couldn't have done it without my teammates."

Still, Magee didn't lack confidence as a rookie, realizing her strength was putting up points.

"I don't want to sound cocky, but shooting is basically my job on the team, and scoring is what I'm supposed to do for them"Magee said."I did expect to score."

That was the case on Saturday, but she didn't truly heat up until the fourth quarter. Magee had a couple in the first, two more off a baseline hook in the second and a slick floater from close range in the third.

After her first three broke the 1,000-point barrier in the fourth quarter, it was as if a burden had been lifted.

"It boosted my confidence a little," she admitted.

Graham, who's been Magee's teammate since bantam, knew she wanted to get the ball back to Magee. The two worked the give-and-go to perfection to set up the big trey.

"That's a big accomplishment, I'm jealous,"Graham said with a wide smile. "That's really cool. I'm really proud of her. I'm so glad that I had the chance to play with her.

"She believes in herself and never gives up. She's a great person and she's there for you."

Chris credits his daughter for all the work she did to reach the special mark.

"She's worked on her own in the summers,"he said."She's spent a lot of time in the gym, and Bill deserves a lot of credit because he spent a lot of time with her. She's put herself in a position where she's built on some skill that's she's had, and she's improved it over the years.

"She's also been very fortunate to play on teams with good teammates," the proud father added. "It's kind of special that someone I played with at KVHS has been her coach at Saint John High. Bill brings that same intensity that he had on the court.

"He's extremely good with the kids and Kathryn has very much enjoyed playing for him these past three years, and his assistant (Jillian) Wilton is the same. She brings a great deal of intensity and a desire to compete, which is important for these girls to understand. Every time they go out on the floor, they need to do the very best they can."

The Greyhounds will soon begin playoffs, a sure sign that winter is winding down. And even though Magee will graduate from SJHS this spring, she'd like to continue playing basketball in college.

While she would look great in a uniform at the University of New Brunswick Saint John, she's exploring different options. The only certainty, at this point at least, is that she wants to study business.

"We'll see what happens,"the 17-year-old scoring sensation said. "I kind of want to get away, but I haven't fully decided yet."