Friday, January 12, 2018

Catholic Memorial holds off BC High to remain Undefeated in League Play

By Matt Feld (@mattyfeld612)

Dorchester, Mass. - As the final buzzer sounded, there was a new man in the one chair for the Catholic Memorial players to mob.

Anthony Rosales scored 14 points and reeled in seven rebounds to lead the Knights to a key 70-67 win over BC High on Friday night at McNiece Pavillion.

Knights coach Denis Tobin has made his name for stewarding his teams through monumental Catholic Conference clashes, but an illness sidelined the legendary coach leaving varsity assistant Jack O’Keefe in charge.

Catholic Memorial (6-3, 3-0) did not skip a beat, holding on late for a monumental three point win.

“We responded to this game as a team,” said O’Keefe. “Will McDonnell did a great job on Travis (Evee) and that kind of set the tone. Coach Tobin prepared the kids, I was happy to steward the skip for a while, but he made CM basketball and we’re all just following in his footsteps.”

The Knights went into the half with a four point lead, but Morales and point guard Kurtis Henderson helped CM up their lead to seven midway through the fourth.

BC High, however, came charging back to get a shot for a last second win.

Jamil Davis drove to the basket for a layup, and Matt Thompson drilled a triple to pull BC High within 64-62 with just over two minutes left.

The Knights increased their lead back up to five, but Troy Salmans connected at the rim to cut CM’s advantage to 67-64.

CM maintained a 68-64 lead with 1:24 left, but Thompson drove through traffic and finished a three point play to pull BC High within just one, 68-67.

Mike Vasil reeled in a rebound off the next Knights’ shot, giving BC High a shot to win with 10 seconds left.

Vasil’s three pointer from the corner went just long, however, and Kani Glover corralled the rebound before knocking down a pair at the free throw line to keep the Knights undefeated in conference play.

The Knights’ perimeter defense was exceptional for most of the night never allowing BC High to get into a consistent rhythm from beyond the arc.

“I take great pride in being the defensive guy on the team,” said McDonnell. “I beg the coaches to let me guard the best players on the other team and I understand my defense is to provide toughness and integrity.”

Looking to build off a big win over St. John’s Prep earlier in the week, it was the Knights who delivered the first blow of the evening.

Morales paced Catholic Memorial to a 15-9 advantage after one, and a three point play from Henderson gave the Knights a 21-11 lead with 5:11 left in the opening half.

CM maintained separation throughout the second quarter as Henderson and Greg Thomas Jr. made back-to-back buckets to quell an Eagles spurt and keep the Knights up eight.

When BC High needed it most, Davis was there to come off the bench and provide a spark.

The sophomore guard contributed four points and three assists in the second quarter including a coast-to-basket basket to pull BC High within 31-30.

With time winding down in the first half, McDonnell drilled a trey from the top of the key to send the Knights into the half up 34-30.

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