Tuesday, February 19, 2013
They say an ugly win is better than a pretty loss.
Such a win allowed the St. John’s Cavaliers to advance to play another day. SJCA edged Covenant Christian in the SCISA state basketball tournament with a 63-61 win last week.
Damian Hurta grabbed a big offensive rebound to hit the winning basket on a put-back with just two seconds left.
St. John’s placed four players in double figures and was led by Mike Lewis and his 19 points.
“We were able to finally put Covenant Christian away after a struggle,” said SJCA Coach Bob Winters. “We shot poorly again but were able to come back from nine points down at one point in the third quarter with some good defensive efforts.”
According to Winters, Damian Hurta, Jalen Ward and Greg Gamble helped turn the game around and erase the near double-digit deficit. “Jalen also came up big in the fourth quarter, scoring four baskets mostly on assists from Bobby (Winters),” the coach said.
A combination of SJCA having a problem finding the basket and Covenant Christian shooting lights out made the game a tight one down to the final buzzer.
“Covenant hit shots throughout the game that I am certain they never made before, but we had enough in the tank to get it done and move on,” Winters said.
In addition to Lewis’ 19 points, Ward added 16, Hurta and Winters 11 each, and Gamble six points to pace SJCA.
With the win the Cavaliers improved to 22-6 and advanced to play in the third round of the SCISA Class AA playoffs on Tuesday at 5 p.m. at Orangeburg Prep against Newberry, which downed Coastal Christian 48-43 to advance.
“It's a game we can win, if we show up with a good effort defensively and can get back to hitting some shots,” Winters said.
Newberry is the tournament’s third seed. “They are solid and well coached,” Winters said.
Caleb Wilson and Emmanuel Bazemore each scored 23 points to lead Covenant Christian.