Written by: on Tuesday, February 8th, 2022


Roman Catholic’s vigorous perimeter defense substantially disrupted LaSalle College’s offense on Monday night propelling the visitors to a 63-52 victory in a Philadelphia Catholic League matchup.  Both Roman and LaSalle are in the PIAA 6A classification.


Roman’s defensive pressure forced LaSalle’s offense to set up closer to half court than the Explorers prefer, and LaSalle’s normally accurate outside shooting suffered.  LaSalle’s offense never developed much continuity in this game, as the Roman defenders forced the LaSalle offense off balance time and again.  It wasn’t so much that Roman forced turnovers–LaSalle has terrific ballhandlers–it was that most of the LaSalle players had difficulty getting good shot opportunities.  The Roman defenders who had the most impact were Toby Ojukwu, Khalil Farmer, Xzayvier Brown, and Quadir Brown.  Ojukwu, in particular, is a tremendous defender.  Samuel Brown, a 6′ 2″ senior, was the one bright spot in LaSalle’s offense.  A Rutgers U. football recruit, Brown’s powerful slashes and occasional shots from behind the arc were difficult for Roman to stop.


The teams exchanged leads in the early going, then Roman freshman Shareef Jackson scored inside to break a 10-10 tie.  Roman led for the rest of the game from that point.  Roman maintained a comfortable lead throughout the game, with the biggest lead being a dozen points, and the outcome was never in doubt.  Roman senior Daniel Skillings, one of the best players in Pennsylvania, was very hard for LaSalle to guard.  Skillings had a particularly strong third quarter, netting nine points in the frame.


Roman is now 10-1 in Philadelphia Catholic League games, and they are in first place in Pennsylvania’s top league.  LaSalle is 6-4 in league games.


Roman had a 27 to 24 edge on the boards.  Roman committed just five turnovers, and, despite Roman’s superb defense, LaSalle committed only seven turnovers.  Roman was 14 of 21 from the free throw line, and LaSalle made all nine of their free throw attempts.  Roman made three three pointers.  LaSalle’s offense is substantially reliant on shooting from beyond the arc, and they made nine three pointers.


Roman Catholic scoring: Daniel Skillings 19, Khalil Farmer 15, Xzayvier Brown 11, Toby Ojukwu 8, Shareef Jackson 6, and Quadir Brown 4.


LaSalle College scoring: Samuel Brown 20, Horace Simmons 11, Nix Varano 10, Christopher Williams 6, Joseph Shields 3, and Timothy Jennings 2.


Roman Catholic 15 15 19 14-63

LaSalle College 10 12 15 15-52

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