HYATTSVILLE – On a night when both teams were without key players, the Gonzaga College High School boys’ basketball team upended Washington Catholic Athletic Conference foe DeMatha Catholic High School 69-62 Wednesday evening to capture the BSN Summer League title. Gonzaga was without three starters, while the Stags were minus D.J. Harvey and Markelle Fultz. […]
HYATTSVILLE – On a night when both teams were without key players, the Gonzaga College High School boys’ basketball team upended Washington Catholic Athletic Conference foe DeMatha Catholic High School 69-62 Wednesday evening to capture the BSN Summer League title.
Gonzaga was without three starters, while the Stags were minus D.J. Harvey and Markelle Fultz. While the Purple Eagles were down three starters, three reserves stepped up to the fill the void in a big way as Mikey Myers (18 points), Brian Doolan (14 points) and Eddie Scott (13 points) enabled Gonzaga to garner the title.
“We knew we were going to be without three starters tonight and those three guys stepped up in a big way,” said Gonzaga coach Juan Hill. “They’re job tonight was to provide the leadership and character that is expected of them and that’s what they did. Mikey and Brian were starters for me last year on the junior varsity team and tonight they showed a lot of poise in the face of adversity.”
With Fultz and Harvey absent, DeMatha got ample production from Kellon Taylor (game-high 28 points) and Ryan Allen (16 points) who accounted for over two-thirds of the scoring. Allen actually led all scorers in the first half with 13 points, but was one for nine in the second half. Taylor kept the Stags in contention by scoring 17 points in the second half on three 3-point field goals and a pair of dunks that enlivened the gathering.
“It was all about providing the intensity,” said Taylor. “We knew that without D.J. and Markelle that we had to step up. I was happy with the way we played, but the bottom line is we just didn’t do enough. I can’t look at my individual numbers and be too happy. We did not come away with the win and for me, that’s what determines whether or not I had a good game.”
Gonzaga vaulted to an early 17-6 lead behind 3-pointers from Myers and Doolan, but they were quickly countered by a pair of 3-pointers from Taylor. Gonzaga pushed the lead to 30-15 with just over five minutes remaining in the first half on another 3-pointer from Doolan and buckets inside from Scott and Myers. But Allen brought the Stags within 36-28 at the intermission by scoring 10 of his team’s final 12 points.
Gonzaga got the jump on the hosts at the outset of the second half as well as jumpers by Scott, Myers and Doolan pushed the Purple Eagles’ lead to 46-32 with 13 minutes remaining. With a rout again appearing imminent, Taylor stepped to the forefront for the Stags. He connected on three 3-pointers and added a vicious dunk over the next nine minutes to bring DeMatha within a single point at 56-55.
But the Purple Eagles would not allow the Stags to overtake them, completing their wire-to-wire tally in the championship game. Scott hit a layup and then Myers added a 3-pointer from the right corner to give Gonzaga a 63-56 lead with just under three minutes remaining. Then Myers did the bulk of the damage over the last two minutes at the foul line, connecting on four of five free throws to extend the Purple Eagles’ lead to 69-60 before Taylor provided the final points with a dunk.
“We wanted to deny [Taylor]those three-pointers in the last five minutes,” Hill said. “But each time we did he just went right through our defense and dunked the ball on us. But overall, it was a good win. It shows the type of program that we’ve always had at Gonzaga.”