Cathedral Phantoms 54
Cantwell-Sacred Heart Cardinals 47By Gerry Freitas
Before a loud standing-room only crowd, the Cathedral Phantoms defeated the Cantwell-Sacred Heart Cardinals, 54-47, in a Camino Real League showdown Friday evening on the loser's court. With the victory, the Phantoms move to 11-1 on the season and 2-0 in league while Cantwell drops to 13-3 overall and 1-1 in the Camino Real.
After a slow start the Phantoms moved in front, 12-7, at the end of the first quarter. They would trail only one time the rest of the way - by just one point early in the third quarter.
Cathedral increased its margin to 30-21 at the halftime break and 44-35 after three quarters. Each time Cantwell made a run the Phantoms responded and maintained the upper hand.
"We just made a few more plays than they did," said Cathedral head coach William Middlebrooks. "It was a physically-challenging game and we limited their threes," the winning coach went on to say.
Cathedral was able to execute in the half court setting if the fast break did not materialize and used a balanced attack to create problems for Cantwell to go along with a very aggressive man-to-man defense on the other end.
And one of the big keys to their win was the performance of senior Ifeoluwa Kalejaiye, who stepped up and led all scorers with 15 points. Senior Jerome Bryant chipped in with 12 for the Phantoms.
Cantwell was paced by senior Joey Covarrubias with 20 while senior Emiliano Mejia had 12.
Middlebrooks was asked what this win over a high-quality opponent on the road says about his team. "It says our kids understand this rivalry," commented the coach. "Can you produce in this situation (hostile environment)?" Indeed, the Phantoms proved they CAN produce.
It was a big win no doubt, for Cathedral. But Middlebrooks was quick to downplay his team's prowess. "We are a developing team," he stated. "And we're not good enough to be in the Open division (in the playoffs)."
Well coach, we shall see. But you may get some argument on that last statement...