Tournament time is the right part of the schedule to play a complete game, and the Holy Name boys basketball team did as such in a Division II district semifinal Thursday at North Ridgeville.
The second-seeded Green Wave (19-5) played fast and physical at both ends against third seeded Rocky River, then used their blistering pace to shoot an equally-blistering percentage from the field in the first half, eventually rolling to a 60-23 victory. They will face No. 1 Cleveland Central Catholic (18-6) Saturday at 4 p.m. In the North Ridgeville district final.
The loss snapped a four-game win streak for the Pirates (14-10), whose last district final appearance came in 2012. After they took a 2-0 lead early in the first quarter, the Green Wave locked in and responded with a 19-0 run that helped put them ahead 30-8 after the first eight minutes.
“You’ve got to credit (Holy Name). They played really well tonight,” Pirates coach Mike Murray said. “They played a complete game and hit shots from everywhere. Defensively, they played pretty well.”
The Pirates struggled against Holy Name’s abundance of length, which was exacerbated by the big guys’ ability to step out and hit deep shots. The Green Wave took a 45-17 lead at halftime after making 8-of-14 three-point attempts. Six-foot senior point guard Quentin Richardson scored 16 of his 18 points in the first half, and also went out of his way to set up six-foot-six sophomore forward Jack Keanneally, who scored 17 of his game-high 21 points over the same span, including three 3-pointers.
Sean Springer joined them in double figures with 10 points. Combined, the trio made eight of the team’s nine 3-pointers on the night and dished out 10 of its 15 assists.
“(Keanneally) shot the ball really well tonight, and they moved the ball really well tonight,” Murray said. “We were in kind of a fog early, not really making anything on offense and on defense not really communicating, and by the time we got down, it was tough to get back.”
Anchored by 6-6 Tony Carter and 6-3 Josh Tait, the Green Wave also carried a 23-13 rebounding advantage into halftime that the smaller Pirates couldn’t match. The two forwards combined for seven points and 15 rebounds, while 6-6 reserve Josh Petrilla had six boards. The Pirates finished the game down 32-26 on the glass, and had seven shots blocked.
“The game was a lot more physical tonight, and you could see the way the (referees) were letting them play, you knew it was going to be a physical game,” Murray said. “We didn’t match their physicality at times during the game, and I think, especially in the first half, we shot a really poor percentage, so we were in an uphill battle from the start.”
Rocky River was outscored 15- 6 in the second half as the clock continued to run, putting an end to an otherwise successful season. Junior forward Charlie Hudson led the team with six points and six rebounds, doing all he could to find the rim amongst Holy Name’s size. Tommy Bebie and Tommy Ruma each finished with four points and combined for seven rebounds. Jack Schill added five points off the bench.
There was no offensive rhythm to be found by the Pirates, who were held to 9-for-38 shooting, while the Green Wave finished 23-49.
Seniors Ruma, Schill, Connor O’Toole and Aaron Fronek played their final game in a Pirates uniform.
“They did a great job night in and night out,” Murray said of his graduating class. “Tonight wasn’t our night, but that’s not indicative of how they played all season. Our seniors have done a great job leading us each and every night. The culture they’re leaving behind is just wonderful.”
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