Norwalk Reflector: Trojans edge St. Paul for key Firelands Conference win

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Trojans edge St. Paul for key Firelands Conference win

By JOSH MORGRET • Updated Jan 11, 2019 at 11:23 PM

GREENWICH — South Central swept St. Paul in the regular season last year only to watch the Flyers take the penultimate game in the state tournament.

Alex Holland scored 25 points to help the Trojans get a bit of revenge, topping St. Paul, 74-70, in Firelands Conference action on Friday night.

The two teams have now met 22 times since the beginning of the 2009-10 season. Each school has been victorious 11 times.

"There is a lot of respect between the two schools," South Central coach Brett Seidel said. "I know how much (St. Paul coach) Mike (Smith) prepares. His kids are always prepared. I would not be surprised if we end up playing three times again this year."

The latest win for South Central (9-3 overall, 6-1 FC) did not come easily. The Trojans led 67-58 with 1:29 left after a score by Simon Blair, but the Flyers (6-4, 4-3) did not go quietly.

Nate Winslow scored for South Central before the Trojans committed one of their 13 turnovers. Jake Griffin was fouled and made both free throws. Blair was then fouled and split the two free throws.

On the other end, Alex Kashian grabbed an offensive rebound, scored, and was fouled. His free throw cut the lead to 68-65 with one minute remaining. Blair again made one of two free throws for the Trojans, and a bucket by Brandon Furlong got the Flyers within two points.

St. Paul used its final timeout and actually forced a turnover on the South Central inbounds play, but turned it back over on a pass down low. Eventually a loose ball was ruled out of bounds off of the Flyers. South Central then worked the ball up court, and David Lamoreaux scored and was fouled. He made the free throw for a 72-67 lead.

Griffin was fouled on the other end while shooting a 3. He made all three free throws, but Blair connected on two free throws with 3.6 seconds left to seal the win for South Central.

"It was a two-point game and we came up with that steal," Smith said. "We got a little anxious. I think if we could have attacked the rim - you want to be aggressive in that situation."

After trailing for most of the first half, St. Paul took a 25-24 lead after a bucket by Ian Kashian and two free throws by Griffin. South Central stole all the momentum back, as Holland scored, then hit a 3, and Blair split two free throws for a 30-25 lead at halftime.

"We took a few chances there," Smith said. "The end of the second quarter was key, in my opinion. We tried to trap and we tried to take the ball out of Blair's hands."

The end of the third quarter was similar to the end of the half. The Trojans led most of the quarter before St. Paul came back for a 42-40 lead after Nick Winslow scored. But, South Central got buckets from Blair and Evan Legg to re-take a 44-42 lead into the final eight minutes.

"We challenged the kids," Smith said. "We need to continue to get better. We have to practice better. We have to be consistent."

A driving layup by Furlong tied the game early in the fourth quarter, but South Central put together its biggest run of the night from there. Blair hit his only 3 of the night before Lamoreaux scored. After he blocked a 3-point attempt, Lamoreaux was the beneficiary of a Blair outlet pass, throwing down a thunderous two-handed dunk. Holland then hit a 3-pointer for a 54-44 lead with 5:08 left.

"We got up 10 and went into cruise control," coach Seidel said. "We knew they were not going to go away. We have seen them. They did not go away."

Griffin hit a triple and Nate Winslow scored in the first 56 seconds of the game to start the Flyers off hot. South Central responded with the next six points and took a 15-13 lead after one quarter.

A driving layup by Justin Hammersmith tied the game early in the second quarter, but Holland drilled a 3 from the right side and his layup opened a 20-16 lead for the Trojans.

"Alex was aggressive," coach Seidel said. "I thought he played with pace, but he was under control. He scooped up a lot of loose balls and caused some jump balls."

Griffin led the Flyers with 20 points while Nate Winslow scored 14 points. Nick Winslow added 11 points and six rebounds.

"We kept going downhill and attacked the basket," Smith said. "When we do that, good things happen."

Blair tallied 20 points, giving him 997 for his career. Lamoreaux finished with with 17 points and a game-high eight rebounds.

"I thought down the stretch, we made decisions that were aggressive, but not smart at the time," coach Seidel said. "I tbought David had two big defensive plays that led to offense for him to help us."

In the junior varsity game, St. Paul cruised to a 54-27 win behind 16 points from Grant Houck and 10 from Scotty Adelman.

ST. PAUL (6-4, 4-3)

Jake Griffin 4-12—20, Nick Winslow 5-0—11, Nate Winslow 6-2—14, Ian Kashian 2-0—4, Alex Kashian 2-4—8, Justin Hammersmith 1-0—2, Brandon Furlong 4-0—10. TOTALS 24-18—70.

SOUTH CENTRAL (9-3, 6-1)

Simon Blair 7-5—20, Alex Holland 8-6—25, David Lamoreaux 8-1—17, Isaiah Seidel 2-2—7, Evan Legg 2-0—5. TOTALS 27-14—74.

St. Paul     13 12 17 28 — 70

S. Central  15 15 14 30 — 74

3-point FGs: (STP) Furlong 2, Ni. Winslow, Griffin; (SC) Holland 3, Blair, I. Seidel, Legg

JV: St. Paul, 54-27

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