[Karen Naess for Shaw Media]
Nobody beat Maine West (8-1) last year in a 35-0 season. The Warriors graduated three starters off that team, but still have 6-foot-4 Angela Dugalic, an Oregon recruit and the No. 1 player in Illinois.
Dugalic had 17 points and eight rebounds, and Dylan Van Fleet 12 for Maine West, which led by as many as eight points in the first half. Sophie Sullivan scored 12 points – eight in the third quarter – and Thomas seven points and six rebounds for Montini.
The Lady Broncos won despite making just 3-for-20 3-point attempts, missing three of four free throws in the final 1:17 and turning it over with 15.5 seconds left to allow Maine West one last possession for the win.
The teams combined for just 11 points and one made field in the fourth quarter, Thornton's basket with 5:59 left.
"We know we have a lot to work on, but we're obviously still happy that we won that game," Sullivan said. "We spent a lot of time this week prepping for them, learning their inbounds plays and knowing who their main players were."