Strong second half pushes Catholic past Dutchtown

Kyle Riviere
Dutchtown's Josh Crockett tries for a tough basket in traffic during the Griffins' 54-41 loss to Catholic. Photo by DKMoon Photography.

Friday night, Dutchtown tried to notch back-to-back wins for the first time all season, but Catholic's razor-sharp proficiency on both offense and defense dashed those hopes and earned them a 54-41 victory.

Hot perimeter shooting by the Griffins gave them the lead early on, but the Bears' zone defense amped up as the game moved along. When the 3-pointers stopped falling for Dutchtown, Catholic was able to go on a 11-4 run that put Catholic in complete control.

For all the struggles the Griffins had endured throughout the season, they were able to open the district schedule with a thrilling 43-42 win over Woodlawn.

They headed into Friday night's matchup with 14-5 Catholic hoping to pull the big upset and march out to a perfect 2-0 mark in league play.

Early on, Dutchtown looked like the team that was 14-5 rather than 3-17.

After Ross Hill nailed a 3-pointer, they ran out to a 5-0 lead. Cameron Burke quickly scored six points to extend the Griffin lead to 10-3.

However, Catholic quickly responded with an 8-0 run that gave them their first lead of the game at 11-10.

With the final seconds ticking away in the first quarter, Neill Caldwell navigated through traffic for a sweet lay-in to give Dutchtown a 12-11 advantage heading into the second quarter.

It ended up being their last lead of the game because the Bears awoke from their hibernation in the second period.

The Griffins went cold from the field, allowing Catholic to start the quarter with a 6-0 run.

Dutchtown missed many outside shots, but the Bears were getting easy looks down low as they made sharp cuts to the basket. In all, they were able to outscore the Griffins 11-4 in the quarter and take a 22-16 advantage into the half.

To start the third, John Ward hit a 3-pointer to put Catholic up nine. After two free throws by Toliver Freeman, the lead matched their biggest of the game at 11.

Dutchtown was able to avoid the blowout with 3-pointers from Hill and Josh Crockett, but the Griffins could not stop the Bears' scoring barrage on the other end.

With a heavy dose of penetration and points in the paint, Catholic was able to take a 42-27 advantage into the fourth quarter.

Freeman went on a quick 5-0 run of his own to give the Bears their biggest lead of the game at 20.

Another 3-pointer by Crockett was able to cut the deficit to 14, but the Griffins couldn't get much closer. The Bears were able to cruise to an easy 54-41 victory.

Dutchtown head coach Patrick Hill was frustrated and almost at a loss for words following yet another tough defeat.

He said, "[Catholic] plays defense just as well as anyone plays defense in the district. We played ok. We worked hard, but they just play defense and run their offense well, and that's all I have to say."

Freeman was virtually unstoppable for the Bears--especially in the second half. He finished with a game-high of 23 points. Ethan Treigle chipped in with 10.

As for the Griffins, Ross Hill led the way with 14. Burke was close behind with 13. Caldwell and Crockett both finished with seven points apeice.

With the loss, Dutchtown is still without back-to-back wins for the year. It dropped their overall record to 3-18 and 1-1 within the district.

The Griffins will host McKinley on Friday night for another try at district victory No. 2.