The Crusaders (20-4) advance to meet Science Hill today at 12:30 p.m. in the sixth-place game of the tournament. The Indians (7-5) were eliminated with the loss.
Father Carr’s bench, led by Malik Brown’s team-high 13 points, outscored the Tribe’s subs 44-12.
“They were very athletic at every position,’’ said D-B head coach Charlie Morgan. “We just weren’t focused in the second half. (We) didn’t get it done on defense and didn’t take care of the ball on offense.’’
The Tribe started the game with every intent on a showdown against the Hilltoppers. Ben Riggs collected eight first-quarter points to put D-B on top 16-14.
Father Carr’s Tamique Sutherland came off the bench and hit two 3-pointers to open the second period. Another bucket by the Crusaders capped an 8-0 run as they took a 22-16 lead with 5:56 left in the first half.
D-B, trailing 28-21, went on a 5-0 surge to close out the half and narrow the gap to 28-26 heading into the locker room.
“I asked them at halftime had they played hard, played smart and played like a team,’’ said Father Carr head coach Paul Melnik. “They got the message.’’
The Crusaders opened the second half with a 10-2 run to push their lead to 10 points, 38-28, with 3:57 to go in the third period.
D-B, trailing 42-30 with 2:24 left in the quarter, used a 7-2 push to pull within seven points heading into the final stanza.
A 10-3 run to open the fourth period increased Father Carr’s lead to 14 points, and it was all downhill from there for the Indians.
“We’re a young team and continue to be inconsistent,’’ said Melnik. “At times we can look so good but at others we seem lost. I’ve got to do better coaching them through this.’’
The Crusaders’ starting point guard Shane Reader saw his team’s bench as the difference maker.
“Our bench was hot so we kept going to them,’’ said Reader. “Once we relaxed, the game opened up. Their defense faltered and we were able to take advantage.’’
With the Big 8 Conference season beginning in earnest next week, the Indians must regroup in a hurry.
“We learned a lot from this experience,’’ said D-B’s Adam Denison. “Especially in the second half.’’
Malik Alfred added 10 points for the Crusaders.
Darius Davis led D-B with 13 points while Riggs finished with 12.