Calvert Hall rally stymies Gaels, 61-51 Cards' Biggs scores 21

St. Joe fades in the 4th

January 17, 1998|By Steven Kivinski | Steven Kivinski,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Life in the Catholic League cellar just got a little lonelier.

No. 13-ranked Calvert Hall, which had been keeping eighth-ranked Mount St. Joseph company with a winless league record, broke out of the basement last night by rallying from behind and upsetting the visiting Gaels, 61-51, in Towson.

The Cardinals (10-7, 1-3), who hadn't won since the day after Christmas, rallied from a 14-point first quarter deficit, took their first meaningful lead of the game with 4: 58 remaining, and hung on for their first Catholic League win.

"Being as young and inexperienced as we are, this was a huge win for us," said Calvert Hall coach Mark Amatucci. "It's been a tough three weeks for everyone.

"All we need to do is get tougher mentally, and I thought we did that tonight."

Senior forward Fred Biggs came up huge for the Cardinals and led all scorers with 22 points. Junior Reggie Bryant added 12 points and two steals for Calvert Hall, and teammate Don Brandenberg rounded out the Cards' double-digit scorers with 10.

The Gaels (13-6, 0-5), who opened the season with 11 straight wins, appeared as if they were going to snap a four-game losing streak during a 10-0 run midway through the first quarter.

Tori Butler's follow-up and ensuing foul shot put the Gaels ahead 13-4 with 4: 25 left in the period. A slew of turnovers and poor shots by the hosts, who suffered through a six-minute field-goal drought in the first quarter, enabled the Gaels to emerge from the period with a 19-7 lead.

Calvert Hall benefited from some fouls and turnovers in the second quarter but still trailed at the half, 29-21.

"I knew we could do it. We just needed to play with some emotion," said Biggs, who scored 18 of his points in the second half and 10 during the pivotal third quarter. "When we play with emotion, swing the ball, and look for open shots, things come together."

That formula paid high dividends for the Cardinals from the outset of the fourth quarter, which saw the hosts take the lead with a 9-2 run. Then Calvert Hall's defense held the Gaels scoreless for nearly five minutes.

Brandenberg's bounce pass underneath to Biggs resulted in an easy basket that upped Calvert Hall's margin to three with 3: 09 left.

With no shot-clock and a three-point lead, the Cardinals spread the floor during the final three minutes and then hit four of five free throws down the stretch to secure the victory.

Pub Date: 1/17/98

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