Bishop Loughlin head coach Ed Gonzalez didn’t want to repeat what he said to his team after a loss to Cardinal Hayes last Tuesday when his team allowed 86 points against them. Instead, he simply “they won’t be giving up 86 points again.”
It certainly looked like his team got the message when they beat St. Raymond High School 71-59 on Friday night in Brooklyn as they held a talented Bronx team to just three points in the third quarter and had an 11-minute stretch where they didn’t allow a single field goal.
“I didn’t realize that until I got into the locker room,” Gonzalez said of the impressive defensive stretch. “That is pretty impressive to hold them to three points in a quarter. That’s almost a shut out. I thought we were a little flat defensively in the first half too so it was good to see them really turn it on in the second half.”
Khadeen Carrington was the star against St. Ray’s with 27 points and Javian Delacruz pitched in with a strong 22-point performance, but everyone gave credit to Darius James for coming off the bench to provide the big defensive boost.
“Darius came in and gave us a big spot off the bench on defense and everybody fed off of him,” Carrington said. “Everybody picked it up and I think that’s what got us the lead.”
Michael Williams, a Rutgers University commit, was held to just 12 points which is why Delacruz’s 22 were so important. After the game Loughlin players were all calling him the x-factor.
“This team is all about picking each other up,” Carrington explained. “I’m not going to be able to score 27 points every night and some nights Mike will be off too and Javian is the guy that we look to step up when that happens. He’s our x-factor.”
A big thing that Loughlin keyed on was stopping St. Ray’s 6-foot-8, 240-pound big man Luis Santos. That meant that Loughlin’s own big man, A.J. Vernon, needed to step up and everyone had to help out as well. They got the job done too as they held him to just seven points all night.
“A.J. did a pretty good job today,” Delacruz said. “We were talking about it all week that he had to come out and play strong. The whole time we were working on it, he’s a powerful player so we wanted to make sure that he wasn’t getting easy shots.”
Loughlin improved to 9-3 overall on the season and 6-1 within the Catholic High School Athletic Association. Their lone league loss was the Hayes game on Tuesday and Gonzalez said that he was impressed the way that they bounced back from that game, but that his team still has a lot of work to do during their quest for the city title.