Kali Murrell
Basketball St. Anthony

St. Anthony Saints Girls’ Basketball Preview

The Saints are off to a great start under first-year coach Ray Bennett, and they’ll need to have a good season to compete at the Division 1 level. Not only is St. Anthony in the top CIF-SS bracket, they’re also in the newly-formed Del Rey League with Bishop Montgomery, perhaps California’s best team.

“I feel good about the team,” said Bennett. “I know there’s some great teams out there, but we should be right where we want to be by playoffs–but it’s going to be tough.”

The Saints (5-1) graduated a reliable double-double post player in Semaj Smith, who’s now at Arizona. That’s left a 6’4” hole in the post for St. Anthony.

“Now we’re going to have to get that double-double from two people,” joked Bennett.

The Saints are relying on a number of talented guards to power their offense, including the twins Kali and Kaila Murrell. The duo have been contributing for years, but are growing into a leadership role this season; Kali had 29 points in a win over Wilson last week.

“They’re a big part of the offense now, they’re very comfortable in the system,” said Bennett.

Drew Sharp and Layrn Morris are listed at 5’7” and 5’9” respectively, but may end up being important players on the boards for St. Anthony.

“They do a lot of things for us,” said Bennett. “They’re guards, but they’ll have to rebound.”


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Mike Guardabascio
An LBC native, Mike Guardabascio has been covering Long Beach sports professionally for 13 years, with his work published in dozens of Southern California magazines and newspapers. He's won numerous awards for his writing as well as the CIF Southern Section’s Champion For Character Award, and is the author of three books about Long Beach history.