MORAGA -- The Salesian High girls basketball team is used to riding the shoulders of Mariya Moore in tight games against top-notch competition.
The Louisville-bound senior certainly did her part with 23 points, seven rebounds and some brilliant assists against St. Mary's on Wednesday, but it was a monster fourth quarter from Kian McNair that carried the Pride to a 64-63 victory over their biggest rival.
McNair, a junior point guard, scored 12 of her season-high 20 points in the final period, including a pair of free throws that gave Salesian a 64-60 lead with nine seconds left. Those stood up as the winning points when St. Mary's star Gabby Green hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer.
"She was amazing," Moore said of McNair. "She makes it happen on defense all the time and today she brought it on both ends. We needed her and she came through in the clutch."
The Tri-County Athletic League victory at Saint Mary's College's McKeon Pavilion continued an excellent week for Salesian (15-5), which beat South Medford, one of Oregon's top teams, on Saturday and handed Miramonte its first loss of the season on Monday.
Meanwhile, St. Mary's (14-5) suffered its third straight loss after being ranked No. 5 in the country by MaxPreps.com last week.
The game, which featured five players signed to Division I colleges, was tight throughout. St. Mary's led by as much as 39-32 midway through the third quarter, but Salesian tied it up early in the fourth.
The Pride took the lead for good on a pair of McNair free throws with two minutes to play and survived a couple of turnovers in the final minute.
Their final six points came at the free throw line, where they were 23 of 26 overall.
Mikayla Cowling led St. Mary's with 20 points with nine of them coming in the final quarter. Ma'Ane Mosley added 15 points, and Green contributed 11 points, 10 rebounds and a handful of steals, assists and blocks.