Bishop McDevitt 53 Lancaster Catholic 48: Feb 27 Wrap

Written by: on Thursday, February 28th, 2019


2018-19 PIAA District 3 boys’ basketball championship, Bishop McDevitt vs. Lancaster Catholic in Lancaster, PA on Feb. 27, 2019. Mark Palczewski Photo.


Bishop McDevitt 53 Lancaster Catholic 48
Feb 27, 2019
4A Championship at Giant Center, Hershey

Bishop McDevitt survived a late rally to claim the District 3 4A crown. McDevitt used a few mini-runs, keyed by Catholic’s turnover issues in the second half, to get the ‘W’. LCHS used a variety of defenses to try to keep the high scoring McDevitt Crusaders from getting on a roll. The key to the game was the man defensive pressure both at full court (face guarding the guards on in-bounding) and getting up into ball-handlers for Catholic.

As is usual in a district game at Hershey, both teams were a bit tight on the offensive end. The biggest run was by LCHS with a 4-0 run, the last of which was a drive by Johnny Besecker – 4-2 LCHS at the 6:10 mark. The offensive player of the game, Tarajae Davis, 5’10” sn. for McDevitt, scored the last bucket of the period as it ended 9-8 in Catholic’s favor.

McDevitt would start period 2 on a 6-2 run. At the 5:09 mark McDevitt would claim a 14-11 lead. LCHS would answer with a jumper by David Kamwanga, 6’6” jn, and a sweet euro step by Calan Titus, 5’11” jn. At this point, the teams went back and forth. Catholic’s Trey Wells, 6’5” jn, scored the last 4 points of the quarter as the half ended 24-23 in Catholic’s favor.

McDevitt cranked up the defense after the half. It seemed that Lancaster Catholic was on the verge of being put away more than once. Catholic had 7 turnovers for the quarter, which led to some run-outs by McDevitt. High scoring forward, Jake Kelly 6’3” forward for McDevitt, popped a three ball vs. LHCS’ 2-3 zone (LCHS would only show this def. a few times if not just once) to put McDevitt up 30-26. Catholic denied the ball to Kelly most of the evening.  Besecker would answer with a three ball by Catholic, only to see McDevitt go on a 5-0 run. The quarter ended with neither team scoring in the last 55 ticks…McDevitt 39-36.

McDevitt continued putting the pressure on LCHS. A jumper by Kenyon Elliot made the score 45-36 at the 4:30 mark. Catholic would not score until the 3:26 mark of the last period. Then it was McDevitt’s turn to turn the ball over. Catholic turned up the defensive heat by using full court and half court traps. McDevitt turned the ball over 5 times in the period, leaving a possible big-time comeback by LCHS. Kamwanga hit the offensive boards and scored from the post, leading the Crusaders (LCHS version) to pull within 1 point at 47-46 with 1:25 on the clock. Davis would nail pressure-packed 1 plus 1 fouls shots, 49-46. Catholic would answer on a layup by Dwayne Caine, 6’5” sn, 49-48 McDevitt. McDevitt would break the press and spread the floor forcing LCHS to foul. McDevitt would make all of their foul shots in the last ½ minute to hold on and pose for championship pictures.

Rebounds: McD 20 LCHS 24
Turnovers: McD 16   LCHS 19
Blocks: McD 5 LCHS 2

Key stat—LCHS had 7 turnovers in the 4th quarter

McD: Tarajae Davis 21, Jake Kelly 11
LCHS: Johnny Besecker 17, David Kamwanga 11

Both McDevitt and Lancaster Catholic will play next weekend in the opening round of the PIAA tournament.
LCHS record is now 16-10. McDevitt improves to 22-3. Andy Herr provided us with his wrap on the Lancaster Country Day victory for the boys 1A game. Mark 22 gave us a few photos of the LCHS game. We never did get a paid attendance for the triple header game…As usual, lots of media coverage…Check out LNP for stories on Lancaster Catholic and Lancaster Country Day. I find it a bit interesting that media that has not covered teams all year, becomes very aggressive in getting their stories, but we get our stories out on our time frame…I had a chance to talk with ref evaluator and Dave Bitting, D3 chair for the basketball tournament, at the game. I always appreciate the honesty that we get from the D3 folks – nothing is perfect, but they take their jobs very seriously. ..and we were told that the district folks were very aware of what LLhoops was doing on covering games. Nice to be noticed – I think 🙂 Finally, it’s a tough thing to talk with coaches/staff on the losing end. S/O to Coach Joe Klazas and staff for sharing some of his thoughts after a tough lose.

~Dell Jackson



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