Lions bounce back for win in second senior match
Rob Massey, Guelph Sports Journal
GUELPH – The St. James Lions turned in a strong third quarter as they rebounded from their opening-game loss to drop the Guelph CVI Green Gaels 70-50 in District 10 high school senior boys’ basketball play Thursday.
While the Gaels scored the first couple of baskets of the second half, the Lions stormed back to turn a five-point lead at halftime into a 16-point advantage by the end of the third quarter.
“It was a must-win at home after the game we had at Ross (Tuesday),” St. James coach Dave Mencfeld said. “It’s early in the season and everyone is just trying to figure out who’s on the other teams and that match-ups and stuff. There’s a lot of talent in District 10 and there’s no really gimme games. We really pulled out a big win, but the game was a lot closer than the score indicated. We have a lot of work to do, for sure.”
The Lions had four players in Thursday’s game who were with the senior squad last season — Aidan Feeney, Matt Sanvido, Josh Mencfeld and Tyson Drohan – and coach Mencfeld has returned to coaching at the senior level after about a decade away after long-time coach Bob Sharpe stepped aside for personal reasons. Mencfeld did coach the juniors at St. James two seasons ago and coaches junior rep basketball in Guelph.
“We’ve got a young team and they’re going to learn how to play together, but it’s a pretty good start,” coach Mencfeld said. “We had a pretty good third quarter today. They really worked hard so I’m proud of the boys.”
The Lions used the first week of the regular season for the team and coach to get used to one another.
“I came into the team late so the team had already been established,” coach Mencfeld said. “I’ve had one practice now and two games with the guys.”
Like all the other teams in the league, the Lions did find out what they need to work on at practices.
“Mostly I would say sharing and following through with my expectations on defence,” coach Mencfeld said. “Transition was a huge point of emphasis (at the practice) – transition offence and transition defence. Overall, our guys did well in those areas. The next step is again now looking at our half-court defence and half-court offence and fine tune it where guys have to get used to where guys are going to be and make sure we’re consistent with the guys running the plays.”
St. James led 20-13 at the end of the first quarter, 28-23 at halftime and 50-34 at the completion of the third quarter.
Sanvido led the Lions with 28 points while Alex Garbuio hit for 10 and Jose Martirena, Drohan and Josh Sims each had seven.
Kyle Kush had 14 for GCVI while Drew Desai, Steven Wang and Ben Tofil each had seven.
The result leaves the Lions and Gaels tied at 1-1. They trail the Ross Royals, Centre Wellington Falcons and Centennial Spartans who are each at 2-0 while the Lourdes Crusaders, Bishop Macdonell Celtics and Orangeville Bears are each at 0-2.
Centre Wellington 42 Lourdes 38
Brock Newton led Centre Wellington with 16 points while Mitchell Rose-Janes netted 13.
Geeth Kenneth collected 10 for Lourdes.
Centennial 88 Orangeville 69
Scoring details were not reported.
Lourdes 66 Centre Wellington 53
Kevin Martinez hit for 32 points for Lourdes while Sebastian Porcellato followed with 22
Levi Humber connected for 16 for Centre Wellington and Aiden Davy chipped in with 11.
Guelph CVI 47 St. James 23
Cam Wheeldon had seven points for GCVI.
James Martin had five for St. James.
Orangeville 71 Centennial 44
Scoring details were not reported.