The Lansing Catholic Boys’ Basketball team stretched their winning streak to 6 consecutive games on Friday Night at the expense of the Portland Raiders by a score of 70-36. The Raider’s fell to 2-5 for the year, while Lansing Catholic improved their record to 6 wins and 2 losses.
Portland stayed close to Lansing Catholic in the first quarter. The second quarter begin with the Cougars leading 15-11 and then a hard-driving David Svanda, Portland’s Jr. forward, fell the floor with a twisted knee. He sat injured and dejectedly on the bench for the remainder of the game. Owen Russell hit a three-pointer on Portland’s next possession to pull the Raiders within three 17-14, but that is as close as it got as Lansing Catholic pulled away and led 32-18 at half-time.
The Cougars used a relentless full-court press for virtually the entire game and slowly and physically wore the Raiders down. The third quarter ended with Lansing Catholic leading 54-29. Lansing Catholic Head Basketball Coach, Brian Dartt, told the Beacon after the game when asked about his team’s full court press, although leading by almost thirty points in the third quarter, “There is a fine line between playing strong for a whole game and being a good sport. We need to be sure that we can play hard for a whole game.” When asked about whether his team had extra intensity tonight as a result of the past football season, where the Raiders defeated Lansing Catholic twice (once during the regular season, and then again in the playoffs), with several of the Cougar and Raider Basketball Players also being part of their respective football teams, Dartt responded, “No. I haven’t experienced that from our players. They don’t seem to be carrying a grudge around with them. We just feel good where we are at as a team right now. We have lots of energy and the kids really care about each other”.
Portland Coach, Dave Pettit, said after the game that Lansing Catholic had a “fast, physical style” and that the Raiders were a bit “undersized tonight.” Overall Coach Pettit felt his team “started off slow” but played “gritty and scrapping”. Coach Pettit acknowledged that David Svanda had been “playing strong” before leaving the game with an injury. Hopefully Svanda will be ready to play on Tuesday when the Raiders travel to St. John’s for a 7:00 PM game with the Redwings who are 1-7 on the year.
The Raiders were led tonight by Owen Russell’s 19 points. Lansing Catholic were led by Freshman Alex Watters with 16, Josh Kramer with 11 and Josh Risner with 10.