Single-game individual scoring records in basketball are almost painful to compile. This is because in addition to the one girl scoring a ton of points, the Cal-Hi Sports state record book has always included the team scores of each game.
Due to the nature of the sport and being on the high school level, it’s virtually impossible for one girl to score 60 points or more in one game unless it comes in one of those contests in which she and her teammates are trying to get her as many points as possible against an opponent that has no chance to stop anything.
On Friday night, talented junior guard Tiara Tucker from Brookside Christian of Stockton, who has displayed what she can do in games against opponents that do have the capability of stopping her, poured in a Northern California record 73 points when the Knights blasted Millennium of Tracy 105-17.
Then on Saturday, in a complete reversal of the night before, Tucker and the Knights went up against the No. 1-ranked team in Northern California from Bishop O’Dowd of Oakland. The result: O’Dowd, as expected, topped Brookside Christian 70-39 and Tucker scored just six points.
“I didn’t have any idea about it being a record,” remarked Brookside Christian head coach Que Ngo of the two big performances of his star. “We played half court and it wasn’t all layups so I really don’t feel we poured it on.”
“After I scored the 63 points, I had a goal of getting 60 again but I didn’t mean to pour it on, it was just the last few games I was feeling it,” Tucker said.
Tucker surpassed the previous NorCal record of 63 that she set one week ago when the defending CIF Division V state champions crushed Stone Ridge Christian of Merced 108-10. Before that, the NorCal record was set in January of 1994 by Jessica Peters from Wilton Christian in a 85-25 triumph against Citadel Christian of Sacramento. Danielle Viglione from Del Campo of Sacramento also had a 58-point game in January of 1992. Viglione also made a state-record 14 three-pointers in that game, which the Cougars won 118-33 over Rio Linda.
On the all-time state list, Tucker’s total from Friday night also puts her behind only Cheryl Miller and Lisa Leslie, two of the greatest players in women’s basketball history.
Miller set the state and national record for single-game scoring with 105 points in 1982 when she played at Riverside Poly and also has the third-highest on the state list with 77 from the season before. Leslie had 101 points in the first half for Morningside of Inglewood in that infamous 1990 game when her team at Morningside of Inglewood was attempting to break Miller’s record against out-matched South of Torrance and she had 101 points at halftime. The team from South, however, refused to play in the second half.
In Brookside Christian’s game against Millennium, the Knights outscored the Falcons 35-0 in the second quarter. Tucker made 31 field goals on 46 attempts (four on 3-pointers) and had seven free throws to account for her NorCal record-breaking total.
Against O’Dowd, it was almost a complete reversal.
With University of San Francisco head coach Jennifer Azzi there to watch her, Tucker scored her team’s first basket, but until she made a 3-pointer with 1:14 remaining, her only other tally was a first quarter free throw.
Part of the reason Tucker (six points, four rebounds, two assists) couldn’t get untracked was the defense of O’Dowd’s Asha Thomas, who many, including former Cal and current Washington assistant Kevin Morrison, consider the top sophomore point guard in California.
The game really belonged to the bigs of O’Dowd, particularly K.C. Waters. The 6-foot-2 Cal-bound Waters, the 2010 State Freshman of the Year, finished with a monster double-double 17 points and 21 rebounds. Waters added three blocks and three steals and her total on the boards was one more than the 20 Brookside recorded as a team.
“I knew it would be hard and they would press, but I didn’t think it would be this hard,” said Tucker, who still managed a smile.
“We knew it would be a tough matchup for us, but hopefully this will help us get where we need to be,” Ngo said.
Here is the updated single-game scoring list from the Cal-Hi Sports record book:
Most Points (Game)
105 – Cheryl Miller, Riverside Poly (179) vs. Riverside Norte Vista (15), Jan. 1982
101 – Lisa Leslie, Inglewood Morningside (102) vs. Torrance South, Feb. 1990 (first half only, second half not played)
77 – Cheryl Miller, Riverside Poly (137) vs. Riverside Norte Vista (11), Jan. 1981 (Jr.)
73 – Tiara Tucker, Stockton Brookside Christian (105) vs. Tracy Millenium (15), Jan. 2013 (Jr.)
71 – LeAnne Bennett, Los Angeles Ribet Academy (81) vs. Sylmar First Lutheran (23), Jan. 1998
71 – Charde Houston, San Diego (123) vs. Chula Vista Castle Park (38), Dec. 2002 (Jr.)
68 – JoJo Witherspoon, Inglewood Morningside (106) vs. Torrance South (29), Jan. 1989
67 – Charde Houston, San Diego (116) vs. San Diego Morse (38), Feb. 2002 (Soph.)
65 – Terri Mann, San Diego Point Loma (109) vs. Chula Vista (35), Dec. 1986
65 – LeAnne Bennett, Los Angeles Ribet Academy (85) vs. Sylmar First Lutheran (24), Feb. 1998
64 – Jamelle Anderson, Redlands Arrowhead Christian (92) vs. Perris Temple Christian (15), 1985
63 – Tiara Tucker, Stockton Brookside Christian (108) vs. Merced Stone Ridge Christian (10), Jan. 2013 (Jr.)
61 – Cheri Graham, Simi Valley (100) vs. Oxnard Hueneme (25), Jan. 1981
61 – Shaunda Greene, Inglewood Morningside (129) vs. El Segundo (33), Feb. 1988
61 – Tracy Titus, Anaheim Loara (78) vs. Los Alamitos (50), Jan. 1991
61 – Charde Houston, San Diego (96) vs. Santee West Hills (70), Dec. 2001 (Soph.)
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