The first annual Catholic High School Winter Classic was held Saturday at Cal State East Bay in Hayward, hosted by Moreau Catholic High School. Here is recap on the event which holds real promise for the future.
Central Catholic (Modesto) 57, St. Elizabeth's (Oakland)The Central Catholic Raiders raced to a 7-0 lead to start the game and never looked back in routing the St. Elizabeth Mustangs. It was 16-3 after one quarter in favor of the Raiders and 31-9 at the half. It was clear it would be a long day for the Mustangs.
Central Catholic's distinct size advantage made it a mismatch that St. Elizabeth couldn't handle. The second half was garbage time in a game where the Mustangs had no answers and were never in it.
Central Catholic was led by Colgate-bound John Fenton with 18 points, while junior Jonathan Boddie had 13. St. Elizabeth's top scorer was sophomore Derek Okoeber with 6 and junior Junior Salcedo added 4. Central Catholic moves to 10-1 on the season while St. Elizabeth falls to 1-7.
Archbishop Riordan (San Francisco) 79, Moreau Catholic (Hayward) 63The Riordan Crusaders jumped out to a 7-0 lead as they got their transition game rolling. The Moreau Mariners came back with some efficient offensive execution to close the gap to 19-13 (Riordan) at the end of the first quarter.
The Crusaders used a trapping man defense in the second quarter to roll into a 48-29 lead at intermission. Senior guard Geru Mabrey lea Riordan's aggressive fast break and also had 12 points. Moreau made an 8-0 run to start the third quarter to cut the margin to 48-37. But the Crusaders closed the quarter with a 19-10 run and it was 67-47 Riordan heading into the final period. The Crusaders biggest lead was 77-55 with 3:00 remaining and they coasted to victory from there.
Riordan was led by senior AJ Padrones with 20 points while Mabrey chipped in with 19. Freshman Brandon Lawrence topped Moreau with 20 points. Freshmen Armond Simmons and Ryan Regner each had 11 for the Mariners. Riordan rises to 7-0 on the season and looks to be one of the top Division IV teams in the North, especially considering they are without FIVE transfers who will become eligible after the first of the year. Moreau, who starts five freshmen, drops to 8-4.
St. Mary's (Stockton) 65, St. Francis (Mountain View) 52In a fast paced contest, the St. Mary's Rams got better as the game went on and defeated the St. Francis Lancers the old fashion way - they earned it. It was 15-14 St. Mary's after one quarter. But the Rams got many high percentage looks in the second quarter to move ahead 35-25 at the break.
That trend continued in the third quarter as the Rams exerted their will in attacking aggressively to up 50-37 at quarter's end. St. Francis could not make a dent in the lead in the final period and the Rams won going away.
Sophomore Jacob Aruta had 13 points to lead the Rams and sophomore Gabe Vincent chipped in with 12. The Lancers were led by junior Alex Frazier with 12 and junior Eric Morgan added 8. St. Mary's is now 6-4 on the year and St. Francis drops to 5-2.
St. Patrick-St. Vincent (Vallejo) 72, Sacred Heart Prep (Atherton) 54The St. Patrick-St. Vincent Bruins rolled to 25-12 first quarter lead and it was clear sailing the rest of the way in downing the Sacred Heart Prep Gators. The Bruins were clicking on all cylinders on the offensive end, hitting shots from the perimeter and finishing the fast break with easy baskets.
At the same time, the Gators couldn't seem to do anything right. St. Patrick-St. Vincent held a 41-21 advantage at the half and maintained a 60-41 edge after three quarters. The Bruins kept the throttle on in transition in the final period and were never seriously threatened.
Senior Jason Webster led the Bruins with 19 points and junior Jalen Canty had 18. Senior Ricky Galliani of Sacred Heart lead all scorers with 21 points and sophomore Corbin Koch had 7 for the Gators. St. Patrick-St. Vincent improves its record to 6-4 while Sacred Heart Prep falls to 2-5.
Serra (San Mateo) 63, St. Joseph-Notre Dame (Alameda) 46The Serra Padres came away with a very convincing win over the St. Joseph-Notre Dame Pilots by virtue of their aggressive pressure defense and a highly efficient transition game.
The Padres were very impressive on both ends of the floor in jumping to 36-20 at the halftime break. The Pilots closed the gap to 45-35 after three quarters and appeared within striking distance. But Serra bounced back strong and increased the lead to 17 at 58-41 with 2:27 left and re-gained complete control and closed it out in impressive fashion.
Senior Jacqui Biggins of Serra topped all scorers with 21 points and Princeton-bound Henry Caruso added 18 for the Padres. St. Joseph-Notre Dame was paced by junior Temidayo Yussuf with 15 points senior Justin Brown had 14. Serra rises to 6-1 on the season and St. Joseph-Notre Dame drops to 7-4.
Salesian (Richmond) 72, Archbishop Mitty (San Jose) 51In what was touted as the game of the regular season in Northern California there is now little doubt as to who the top team is, as the Salesian Pride routed the Archbishop Mitty Monarchs in a most impressive win before a crowd of about 2,500 people.
After falling behind 9-2 and playing tentative to start the game, Salesian bounced back aggressively and took a 14-9 lead after one quarter that it would never relinquish. Things kept clicking for the Pride in the second quarter as they built the lead to 12 at 31-19 with 1:58 left before the Monarchs rallied and cut it to 31-23 Salesian at the half.
The Pride blitzed Mitty with a 12-0 run to start the second half to make 43-23 Salesian with 5:20 left in the third quarter. Salesian seemingly could do no wrong and had the Monarchs completely frustrated in rolling to a 56-34 lead after three quarters. It was more of the same in the fourth quarter as Salesian increased the margin to 30 points with 5:43 remaining. Mitty went on an 11-0 run to cut it 66-47 at the 3:25 mark. But that was as close as the Monarchs would get as the Pride pulled away at the end to put in an undeniable claim to the number one spot in Northern California at this point in the season.
Salesian was led by California-bound Jabari Bird (whose future coach Mike Montgomery was in attendance) with 19 points, 10 rebounds, 4 steals and 3 assists. Montana-bound Mario Dunn added 15 for the Pride. Mitty was lead by all-everything senior Aaron Gordon with 18 points, 10 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks. Senior Davis Messer added 7 for the Monarchs. Salesian improves to 7-1 on the year while Mitty falls to 3-2.