Senior Erin Fabbri broke her ankle on Dec. 6.
Now she is trying to break into an elite list of St. Viator girls basketball players.
Only two Lions have reached 1,000 points for their career -- Denise Walker (current Lions freshman coach) and Susan Hohenadel (junior guard at Rockhurst University).
Fabbri, a four-year starter, needs 37 points to join them.
Playing in her third game back since the injury against Gorden Tech, Fabbri scored 9 points as the Lions raced past Chicago Academy 51-16 on Wednesday night at Fenton High School in Bensenville. The Lions improved to 2-1 in the Season's End tourney and 11-11 overall.
Jessica Hohlweg led the Lions with 10 points while Sam Hogan chipped 7 and Maddie McAteer 6.
"I'm so excited for Erin," said Hogan, who also pitches for the Lions' softball team. "She so deserves it. She helps all of us. I had no doubt she would come back."
Nor did Lions coach Christina Jost.
"She put the time and work in," said the former Buffalo Grove standout guard. "She has the dedication. If ever there was a kid to come back, it's Erin. She loves the game too much."
The chance to reach a milestone helped motivate Fabbri during her rehab.
"It would be a big accomplishment, it's been my goal," she said of reaching 1,000 points. "Obviously, the injury was a big step back. But I know if I work hard and play in every game, it will happen."
Fabbri spends time having the ankle taped and she wears a brace on it.
"It's a little sore but getting better every day. I scrimmage more and more every day so I can see more time in the games."
In her first game back against Nazareth (4 points), Fabbri entered in the third quarter. Against Lake Forest Academy (8 points), she made her first appearance in the second period.
On Wednesday, Jost brought Fabbri into the game in the first quarter as the first player off the bench.
Two buckets by Hohlweg, a 3-pointer by Kayne Stanley and a rebound layup by McAteer had give the Lions a 9-0 lead when Fabbri took the floor.
"We've just been trying to get her minutes here and there," Jost said of Fabbri, an-all-area guard last year and honorable mention all-state. "We want her to get the feel of being out there.
"She's a shooter, so we're trying to get her feel for that back. But more important, Erin a leader so it's nice to have her back for that leadership. And it's great to see her smiling again."
The Lions had plenty to smile about Thursday as they built a 30-3 lead by half.
They had too much height, offense and defense for the Cougars (14-7), a Class 1A school.
"They pass ball well and the play defense," said Chicago Academy coach Valerie Enwall who starts three freshmen. "It's tough playing in this tournament. The only reason we come here is to try and get ready for our state tournament."
The Lions were ready on the boards, scoring seven times on rebounds layups. Three were by Hohlweg while McAteer, Eilis Finnegan, Hogan and Maggie Leazer had the others.
In all, nine Lions scored including Molly McNamara with 4 points.
Fabbri and teammate Susie Moynihan each had a steal and layup.
It was a 3-point play midway through the fourth quarter which gave Fabbri 963 points heading into Saturday's game at Marist.
Now time will tell if the former St. Emily standout will make it into the Lions' record book with 1,000 points.
If she does, she sure will have a lot of company with other current players throughout the area.
Jackie Kemph (Rolling Meadows), Alexis Glasgow (Rolling Meadows), Jenny Vliet (Rolling Meadows), Brittany Collins (Maine West), Haley Gorecki (Fremd), Taylor Will (Prospect) and Deanna Kuzmanic (Wheeling) have all scored 1,000 points.
Walker is Viator's all-time scoring leader with 1,532 points accomplished in 1996 and Hohenadel hit 1,000 in her final game as a Lion in February of 2010.
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