Lourdes Crusaders sweep their way into AA semifinals
GUELPH – The Lourdes Crusaders swept their matches in both senior and junior play in round-robin pool play on the opening day of the two-day CWOSSA high school AA boys’ basketball championship tournament.
In play at Lourdes, the Crusaders defeated the Holy Trinity Titans of Simcoe 69-40 in their first game and the Paris Panthers 57-26 in their second match.
The goal for the Crusaders was “two wins first and foremost,” Lourdes coach Mike Finoro said. “And then continue our preparation for two battles – two battles that we’re hopefully going to have (Tuesday).”
Kevin Martinez struck for 18 points for Lourdes in the win over Paris. The Crusaders had control of the game early as they led 14-3 at the end of the first quarter, 26-10 at halftime and 44-20 at the end of the third quarter.
Tyler Blais added 12 points for Lourdes while Sebastian Porcellato had nine.
Ian Lainson and Myles McVittie each had five for Paris.
Lourdes had four players hit double digits in scoring against Holy Trinity as Martinez had 19 points, Blais 18, Hunter Power-Rossi 11 and Sebastian Porcellato 10.
Aaron Figaro collected 11 for Holy Trinity while Ben Vanrooy had eight.
The Crusaders had a slim 14-13 lead at the end of the first quarter and extended it to 34-20 at halftime and 56-33 after three quarters.
The two wins for Lourdes were by comfortable margins.
“They were competitive,” Finoro said. “We knew we were capable of winning both of those games, we just had to control what we could control and I thought we did a pretty good job of that in both games today.”
Prior to the tournament, the Crusaders had been off since being edged by the Ross Royals in the District 10 semifinals. The start of the CWOSSA tournament was also delayed due to last week’s weather as it had been originally scheduled to start Thursday.
“We’ve gotten in the gym a couple of times,” Finoro said. “We had a quick practice over the weekend. Honestly, the guys were ready to play last Thursday so they were pretty excited to get out there and play today. To finally get out on the court and battle for this championship is where they want to be.”
The District 4 champion Centre Dufferin Royals of Shelburne defeated the St. David Celtics of Waterloo 63-51 and they clobbered Grey Highlands Lions of Flesherton 79-29.
Mark Taylor led the Royals with 26 points in the win over St. David while Abel Sales had 16.
Landon Atkinson had 16 for St. David.
Centre Dufferin was up 28-17 at halftime and 52-33 after the third quarter.
The Royals had four players in double digits in scoring in the win over Grey Highlands – Bradley Dwomoh with 17, Taylor and Jaden Hamilton with 11 apiece and Nathan Issac with 10.
M. Groentendorst had eight for Grey Highlands.
Centre Dufferin jumped ahead early as the Royals led 22-6 at the end of the first quarter, 46-8 after the first half and 65-19 at the end of the third quarter.
In other games, the Galt CI Ghosts downed Grey Highlands 73-19, St. Mary’s Mustangs of Owen Sound dropped Paris 42-32, St. David edged Galt CI 60-57 and St. Mary’s defeated Holy Trinity 71-53.
Tuesday afternoon’s semifinals at St. James have the Crusaders playing St. David and Centre Dufferin taking on St. Mary’s.
“Our semifinal is against a very good St. David team. They have a few really talented players, they’re well coached and they battle hard,” Finoro said. “They’re a very physical and strong team so we’ve got to come out ready to play. At this point of the season there are no easy games and it’s win or go home. You have to come ready to play from tip-off.”
Semifinal winners advance to the final slated for 7 p.m.
In play at St. James, the Crusaders downed Simcoe Composite Sabres 53-34 and Paris 65-62.
Aidan Doucette scored 14 points in the win over Simcoe Composite while Alex Auld had six for the Sabres.
Leading scorers for the game against Paris were not reported.
Centre Dufferin split its games as the Royals lost 72-69 to the Monsignor Doyle Mustangs of Cambridge 72-69 and defeated the Glenview Park Panthers of Cambridge 55-48.
Aaron Cunningham of the Royals had a huge 47-point game in the loss and a 20-point outing in the win.
Peter Thatch had 27 points for Monsignor Doyle against Centre Dufferin while Khalil Derman had 14 for Glenview Park against the Royals.
In other games, Glenview Park defeated St. Mary’s 61-53, Sacred Heart Crusaders of Walkerton downed Paris 49-29, Monsignor Doyle dropped St. Mary’s 72-32 and Simcoe Composite defeated Sacred Heart 45-35.
Lourdes and Centre Dufferin are to meet in one of the semifinals Tuesday morning at St. James while Monsignor Doyle and Simcoe Composite are to battle in the other one.
- Guelph Sports Journal