Entropy has accompanied the boys’ varsity basketball Coastal League season with ups, downs, surprises, unpredictability and for the most part, close games reigning. With three road games and two big home games remaining, the team began its end of regular season quest in earnest against Santa Fe Christian (SFC) in what was the first of three consecutive games on foreign wood.
Thirsty for a victory to avenge their surprise 54-51 loss to the Knights on Jan. 11 at Eva May Fleet Gym, the Eagles extended their claws. What transpired on Jan. 29 was a gnarly defensive battle. The first quarter ended with SFC in the lead 9-6. In the second, all Bishop’s could muster was a single free throw by Zach White ’20, ending the half in a 23-7 deficit. Held to one point in a quarter, a team could have easily gotten discouraged and thrown in the towel. But not this Bishop’s bunch!
The team came alive in the third, outscoring SFC 20-8 with a flurry of threes by Dash Tsai ’20 and Zach. Unfortunately, this was a wake-up call for the Eagles. They met Bishop’s scores 15-15 to finish out the game with a tight 46-42 win for the home team. Defense and a bit of an unruly crowd ruled the day, and the Knights did not fold. Dash led all scorers with 14. Chris Rose ’19 and Zach had 13 apiece. Chris pulled down 13 rebounds and Dash had eight.
The team had to quickly put this SFC loss behind them as looming large on the screen was Francis Parker on Feb. 1 at their house. With their 55-45 victory over the Knights at Eva May on Jan. 15, after Bishop’s jumped to a 21-10 lead in the first quarter, this game took on special significance.
This would be another low-scoring defensive struggle. The Knights jumped to a quick 5-2 lead in this game but Parker, with a nice home crowd, reclaimed the floor with confidence. They threw in a reverse first quarter from the one on our court, taking control 13-7. With momentum seeming to be on their side, the Knights would not relent, outscoring the Lancers 15-11 in the second to narrow the deficit to 24-22.
Bishop’s got pugnacious in the third quarter. Graham Cartwright ’19 and Zach stole the show and scored seven points each. The defense only allowed Parker three points, and that score came on a last-second NBA trey to keep them from being shutout in the quarter. Ahead by as many as 14 points, Knights took the lead 38-27 into the fourth.
But that lead evaporated as Parker suddenly got hot and narrowed the lead to 39-37. It was feeling like deja vu all over again until the sparks started to fly for Bishop’s. The team scored 10 unanswered points to take a 49-37 lead with 28 seconds remaining in the game. The Lancers would get one final desperation three with 14 seconds remaining, but it was not enough to stop the Knights from winning their second Coastal League game, 49-40.
This nice win on their court was definitely on the money. Four players scored in double figures. Chris and Zach had 11, Anthony Wood ’19 and Graham had 10.
On Groundhog Day, it would be a Battle on the Bay with teams from the Coastal Conference pairing up against squads from the City Conference at Mission Bay High School. The Knights drew Patrick Henry High with a tip off at 1:30 p.m. Playing two games on consecutive days, especially after such an emotional one against Parker, there was no telling how things would shape up.
It didn’t take too long to know this would be a win for Bishop’s. The team would never trail after jumping ahead of the Patriots 29-17 at the half. Patrick Henry would not immediately fold, as they came out in the third to stay afloat and match the Knights’ 14 points in that quarter.
However, Bishop’s would prevail, winning the fourth quarter handily and closing out the game with a 59-42 victory. Chris Rose was a show stopper in this contest, piling up 18 points and sweeping the boards for 19 of the team’s 36 rebounds! Zach found the net for some nice threes and 15 total points.
Two wins in two days. Definitely two for the money in this week’s three for the road. The team has two home games to finish the regular season. They play on Tuesday, Feb. 5 against Army-Navy and Friday, Feb. 8 at 7:30 p.m. against La Jolla Country Day. Looking to keep that win streak alive, the team’s mission is turn around the losses at the Warriors’ and the Torreys’ home courts and finish with four wins in a row.
Friday night will be some doozy of a basketball extravaganza. Beginning with frosh-soph boys playing at 3 p.m., followed by the boys’ junior varsity at 4:30 p.m., an Alumni Tailgate from 5:30-8:30 p.m. and girls’ varsity at 6 p.m. It will be a Knight to remember.