|Mikey West goes in for two of his 16 points, which tied with DeAndre Wallace for the Holy Cross|
lead in the 56-45 NVL first round win over St. Paul. (Copyright, Sports on CT-69)
The Crusaders had struggled on offense and needed a spark. Holy Cross turned up the fullcourt pressure, pounded the backboards, and rallied. The Crusaders tied the game by the end of the third quarter, then pulled away for a 56-45 win over the Falcons.
Holy Cross will play third-seeded WCA, an 85-74 winner over No. 6 Naugatuck, on Monday in a 5 p.m. semifinal back at the Reggie O'Brien Gymnasium at Wilby High School. DeAndre Wallace and Mikey West had 16 points apiece to lead the Crusaders.
Gaeley Etienne had three points near the end of the third quarter to pull Holy Cross to a 36-all tie. A Wallace dunk put the Crusaders ahead to stay early in the fourth quarter.
A Matt Garry 3-pointer got St. Paul to within 50-45 at just over a minute to play, but Holy Cross scored the last six points. Garry had 12 points for the Falcons while Tyler Arbuckle led the team with 15 points.
The game went at St. Paul's pace in the first half, as Falcon patience resulted in a 25-19 halftime lead. Holy Cross had the game tied by the end of the third quarter, then West scored nine of the 20 Crusader points in the fourth quarter.
PHOTOS: Click here to see my images from the Holy Cross-St. Paul game.
No. 3 WCA 85, No. 6 Naugatuck 74: The Spartans got off to a slow start, then blew past the Greyhounds and onto the NVL semifinals.
WCA had a very balanced offense, led by 21 points from Langstun Racine. Matt Torres scored 19 points while Jadan Battle and Marquan Watson struck for 17 apiece. Once the Spartans got rolling, they blew the game open. WCA led 51-31 at halftime.
No. 1 Sacred Heart 76, No. 8 Seymour 48: Raheem Solomon and Isiah Gaiter combined for 54 points, including the first 31 for the Hearts.
Each player finished with 27 points as Sacred Heart rolled to the victory. The Hearts jumped out to a 29-9 lead after one quarter and never looked back. Sacred Heart will play fifth-seeded Crosby on Monday in the other NVL semifinal at 7 p.m.
No. 5 Crosby 99, No. 4 Torrington 73: The Bulldogs led 51-32 at the half and shot their way to the win over the Red Raiders, who beat them in the season opener in Torrington.
Kerwin Prince had 24 points to lead Crosby, but he was far from the only scorer. Justin Davis had 23 points (5 3-pointers), Markeese Days put in 19, and Tyler Spears added 18 (4 3-pointers).
It was bombs away for the Bulldogs, who are very tough to stop when they get hot from long range.