Friday, February 16, 2018

Catholic Memorial Stays Hot with Win over Brockton

By Matt Feld (@Mattyfeld612)

West Roxbury, Mass. -- As the temperatures began inside Ronald S. Perry Gymnasium, Friday night for Catholic Memorial quickly turned into Christmas morning.

The No. 9 Knights used their full court pressure, and a diverse offensive attack led by Jarron Flynn’s 20 points, to knock off No. 4 Brockton, 96-85, on Friday on a hot night at Catholic Memorial High School.

Five different Knights (15-4) finished in double figures while Will McDonnell corralled 12 rebounds, dished out five assists, and came away with five steals.

“We wanted to continue to run,” said Catholic Memorial head coach Denis Tobin. “It’s hot in here and we’re used to it. We wanted to see if they could do it for 32 minutes like we’re used to doing it.”

Catholic Memorial held a 55-46 lead at the intermission, but quickly pulled away to begin the third quarter.

Flynn drove to the basket for two, and off a Boxers turnover Kurtis Henderson (19 points) knocked down two at the charity stripe.

A Jarice Harris pull-up trimmed the deficit back down to 12 for the Boxers but back the other way McDonnell swished a left-wing three pointer to put the Knights back up 15.

On the Boxers ensuing possession, McDonnell showcased his defensive attributes poking the ball away to set up a Jarrett Martin two handed slam to put the Knights up 65-48.

“They are 16-1 and we knew we had to come out and play hard,” said McDonnell. “Coach Tobin at the half told us to play our game and play CM basketball. Everyone contributed and it was just a statement win.”

Catholic Memorial upped their lead to as many as 25 early in the fourth quarter on a Henderson coast-to-coast bucket, but the Boxers did not go quietly.

A 14-0 Brockton run, capped off by a pair of baskets from Abu Kaba (25 points) pulled the Boxers within 87-76 with 3:30 to play.

Whenever the Knights needed to reach another gear offensively, they were able to do just that.

After Brockton cut it to 88-78, McDonnell corralled his own miss and passed it to a cutting Henderson who finished plus the foul to give the Knights back a 13-point lead.

Flynn then sealed the victory for CM, breaking the Boxers’ pressure before laying it in to put the Knights up 94-81 with just over a minute to play.

“We give it a little extra here at home,” said McDonnell. “(The Ronnie) is a special place to play.”

Catholic Memorial came out of the gate and immediately engulfed the Boxers with their pressure and tempo.

Over the first three minutes the Knights forced six Boxer turnovers, the last of which was a steal by Kani Glover (19 points) resulting in a Henderson layup to put CM up 11-2.

The Knights got their first quarter lead up to 21-8 on an Anthony Morales bucket but six straight points from Kaba over the final minute of the frame brought the Boxers offense to life and trimmed the deficit to 30-19 after one.

Glover connected on a layup off a McDonnell steal to keep the Knights lead at 11 early in the second quarter, but a 10-1 run for the Boxers capped off by a Nayvon Reid three-point play inched Brockton to within just one, 42-41.

Catholic Memorial dug in and closed the half strong. A 13-3 spurt over the final three minutes, highlighted by five straight points from Glover, increased the Knights lead back up to 11 at the break.

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