Bishop Walsh guard Mike Williams goes to the basket against DeMatha. [SIDNEY THOMAS]
Bishop McNamara’s Jeremiah Quigley hit a pair of tying free throws with 3.7 seconds remaining, but on the ensuing inbounds St. France’s Jahnathan Lamothe found teammate Bryce Lindsay streaking open up the court for the go-ahead lay-in just ahead of the buzzer to win it.
Lindsay finished with 17 points, Carlton Carrington added 16 and Tyler Jackson 10 for St. Frances.
Favour Aire had 18 points, 18 rebounds and 4 blocks for the Mustangs, who 17 from Quigley and 10 from Chase Lawton.
McNamara led 15-8 after one quarter, but St. Frances used a 10-0 run to take control in the second, outscoring the Mustangs 22-9 in the frame to take a 30-24 lead at the break.
McNamara made a run of its own in the third quarter to tie, but St. Frances held the advantage, with Carrington scoring off an offensive rebound to make it 50-45 heading into the final 8 minutes.
The team traded buckets down the stretch, with Jackson eventually giving the Panthers a 64-62 lead with 1:20 remaining. Quigley drove to the hoop late and was fouled to set up the final sequence.
“I told Jelly [Lamothe] - he’s good at those long passes," Lindsay said. "So when we were in the huddle I told him, ‘Just throw it, I’m running.’ He threw a great pass, and I just laid it up.”
DeMatha closed on an 8-0 run to cap a furious rally and edge a Bishop Walsh squad that appeared primed for the upset most of the night.
Playing in front of a raucous home crowd, Bishop Walsh came out energized and put DeMatha on its heels immediately. The Spartans led 22-17 after one quarter and 37-28 at the half behind the strong play of guards Mikey Allen and Mike Williams.
Virginia Tech commit Rodney Rice had a team-high 21 points, 11 rebounds and 4 assists for the Stags, who got 12 points from Xavier-bound guard Tyrell Ward and 9 from Jaden Winston.
Bishop Walsh, led by 11 points (44-33) with three minutes remaining in the third. The Stags made their move, but still trailed 46-39 after three quarters. DeMatha eventually pulled ahead in the fourth, and after a few lead exchanges, Rice put them ahead to stay in the final seconds to cap the closing run.
We knew they were going to try to keep going with the energy," Rice said, "and they have the fans there for momentum and all that, but we just stayed poised and finished out the game strong.”
Williams finished with 20 points to lead the Spartans, while Allen finished with 18.
Long Island Lutheran made a statement in its first ever Alhambra game, leading from start to finish - and by as many as 30 points - in a dominating victory.
The Crusaders jumped out to a quick 10-1 lead, but Gonzaga rallied, closing it to 12-10 on a bucket by Nick Evans.
Unfortunately for the Eagles, that was about as close as things would get. The Crusaders blew the game open in the second quarter, taking a 38-17 lead at the half. They would extend it to as many as 30 points in the third quarter.
Jayden Reid had a game-high 16 points for the Crusaders, who got 12 from Providence commit Jayden Pierre and 10 from Jaxon Koroll.
Devin Dinkins scored 10 points to lead Gonzaga, while Quinn Clark had 9 and Jared Turner 8.
In a much-anticipated nightcap, Paul VI made key free throws down the stretch to hold off MSJ and advance to Friday’s semifinal round.
THe game featured the two hottest teams in the tournament, with PVI coming in off Washington Catholic Athletic Conference and Virginia Independent Schools titles last week, while MSJ had won the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association and Baltimore Catholic League titles in that same span.
Both teams started slow offensively, and the score was tied at 8-8 after one quarter. PVI led 22-21 at the half and 41-36 after three quarters as the scoring picked up, but MSJ tied the game at 46-46 on a 3-pointer by Bryson Tucker with 4:32 remaining.
PVI’s Ben Hammond responded with a big 3-pointer of his own, and Dug McDaniel followed with a breakaway slam to make it a five-point game (51-46) with three minutes to go. MSJ made one last run to close the gap, but PVI held on down the stretch.
Tucker had a look at another shot to tie late, but his pull-up 3-pointer fell short and the Panthers sealed the win at the free throw line.
I just thought our guys just stayed in the moment,” PVI coach Glenn Farello said. “Ben hit another big shot for us - he’s done it all year, you’ve seen it. He just finds ways to make plays in the fourth quarter for us all the time. He hit clutch free throws and Dug obviously hit clutch free throws, so I just thought that they stayed in the moment. We’ve had so many close games like this, so we’ve been battle tested in these moments, and I just thought that we were able to just stay with it. We never gave the lead back up - they tied it at 46. We couldn’t pull away - they’re a great team - but I’m just real proud of our guys for finding a way in the fourth quarter again to make enough plays and find a way to win and fight for each other.”
Hammond finished with 16 points to lead Paul VI, while DeShawn Harris-Smith had 15 points and 8 rebounds and McDaniel 14 points, 5 rebounds and 4 steals.
Tucker finished with a game-high 27 points for the Gaels, who also got 11 points and 13 rebounds from Amani Hansberry.
Bishop McNamara vs. Bishop Walsh, 4 pm
Gonzaga vs. Mount St. Joseph, 5:45 pm
St. Frances vs. DeMatha, 7:30 pm
Long Island Lutheran vs. Paul VI, 9:15 pm