A Great… Sloppy, Mistake-Filled… Catholic League Game

Some prefer to get dressed up and head downtown to one Stephen Starr’s restaurants for what they consider a “great” meal. The white linen tablecloths and the waiters with the European accents add to the ambiance for them. The meticulous presentation of the entree is part of the experience. The carefully cut steak, the perfectly positioned asparagus spears and the pricey bottle of wine… For many, it’s all part and parcel of a “great” meal…

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Me… I’d much rather head throw on some sweats and head over to Mom-Mom’s house… Once there, I grab one to those trays that you use to eat in front of the TV. With my seating squared away, I head for the kitchen… No waiters… No foreign accents… Just a bunch of perfectly prepared soul food… fried chicken, fried fish, ribs, potato salad, potato salad, greens, yams, biscuits… You know the rest… Keep the wine… Welch’s grape juice will do just fine…

Presentation is not a consideration… Just pile it on… Need some of everything… The messier the plate, the better…

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The Neumann-Goretti win of Roman Catholic on Friday night was just like a plate at Mom-Mom’s… It was sloppy, it had a little bit of everything… turnovers, hard fouls, elbows, controversial calls, suffocating defense, poor shot selection, mental mistakes, etc…

It was also good as shit… Just like that plate at Mom-Mom’s…

Let me be clear… Roman Catholic has a very good high school basketball team… Shit… They have four (4) legitimate Division 1 players in the starting 5…

They are also well coached…

The problem is they only use two other players…

If they were playing in Ice Cube’s 3 on 3 format, they would be overwhelming favorites…

However, they are playing 5 on 5 scholastic basketball… And, Neumann-Goretti plays 8 very good players…

Depth was the difference…

At the start of the game and at the start of the second half, Roman was VERY impressive. Seth Lundy, Hakim Hart, Allen Betrand and Lynn Greer jumped out on Neumann-Goretti… In both halves Roman managed to separate themselves a lil’ bit… But inevitably, Neumann-Goretti was able to wear them down…

When Neuman-Goretti goes to the bench, they bring in TaQuan Woodley a 6’6″ freshman phenom… He impacts the game every time he comes on the floor…

Case in point, Neumann-Goretti’s underclassman bench player met Roman Catholic star forward Seth Lundy at the top of white square on a drive… He got his entire palm on the ball and proceeded to throw the ball and Lundy to the ground with force…

Daymmmmnnnn youngfella…

When they go to the bench, Neumann-Goretti becomes a different and in some ways better team…

Roman on the other hand, does not go to the bench… They rely on their four stars to play the entire 32 minutes… On most nights, they will be able to win that way… On this night it was not enough…

Not withstanding the presence of Roman’s four Division 1 prospects, the best player on the floor tonight was Neumann-Goretti’s Chris Ings.

Ings was really messing up everyone’s plate…

The junior point guard harassed Greer all over the court… He forced him rush his shots…

 

He forced him to turn the ball over and turn the ball over and turn the ball over…

Ings finished with 22 points, Greer finished with 7…

Neumann-Goretti also has a significant s”ize advantage in the low post. When Neumann-Goretti was struggling to create a shot in the second half, they made a determined effort get the ball in the low post to 6’9″ center Marcus Littles… He was able to muscle his way to field goals on consecutive possessions. These buckets helped stem the tide for Neumann-Goretti.

Roman Catholic’s Big 4 scored 51 of the team’s 54 points… But on this night, it just wasn’t enough to overcome Chris Ings and his gang of 8.

Sitting with friends, Temple legend, Howie Evans, Philly Pride Coach Howard Hudson and Ron Byrd from down the “Bottom,” it felt like I was at Mom-Mom’s house… Only better… The game was live and not on TV!

That felt like a playoff game… The kids on BOTH teams wanted to win… The pressure was palpable… Some handled it better than others…

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Chris Ings (right) scored 22 points

Chris Ings handled it best… and his team came away with the win as a result.

See y’all at the next one… Bring the sweet potato pie!

 

 

 

 

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