Canterbury tops Bishop Verot in District 3A-8 boys basketball semifinals
After Thursday night’s backyard brawl, it will be Canterbury which will defend the neighborhood Saturday night.
The second-seeded Cougars (22-8) got the best of Bishop Verot in the District 3A-8 boys basketball semifinals, 59-46.
The win sent Canterbury over to its next-door neighbors at Florida Southwestern to face Community School of Naples (26-1) for the championship on Saturday in Suncoast Credit Union Arena.
CSN, the top seed, dispatched Gateway Charter 71-40 in the other semifinal down in Naples.
Community School defeated Canterbury 72-62 in overtime in the teams’ regular season meeting.
“We’re excited to be in the district final,” Cougars coach Frank Hibbs said.
The Vikings (16-11) and Cougars, separated only by a couple of miles, brought large student sections that kept the Canterbury gym roaring much of the night.
“It was a hard-fought battle, the teams this close, the proximity, rival schools, everybody knows everybody,” Hibbs said.
Matt Herting’s Verot squad played some intense defense, but there was only so much the D could do.
“They’re just really good offensively, you know, at three positions,” Herting said. “We played great defense, and scrapped, and won on guts and heart, but against a team that can shoot the way they do, we needed to hit a few more shots.”
Junior guard Alan Cedeno of Canterbury led all scorers with 25 points, including five 3-point baskets. Senior wingman Jovan Kojic scored 11 and junior guard Alex Dunavant 11.
“Obviously we do have shooters,” Hibbs said, “But I thought our defense was really good at times, and we did a good job of neutralizing their two best players at the beginning of the second half.”
Canterbury led by 15 after three quarters, and things didn’t change much in the final eight minutes.
Guard Denzel Redd, a senior, scored a team-high 16 points in his career finale for Bishop Verot. The Vikings’ center, 7-foot senior Israel Torres, added 11 points.
St. Petersburg Northeast 57, Mariner 53: The Tritons (19-6) led 28-24 at halftime, but a cold third quarter prevented the Tritons from upsetting the region’s second seed. The Seminoles (23-6) move on to host No. 3 Naples in the regional semifinals.
Imagine School North Port 53, Bishop Verot 46: The Vikings (10-18) fell behind 15-6 in the first quarter and could not make up the deficit. Imagine (13-12) advances to the second round at Neumann.
Oasis 5, Mariner 2: The Sharks upended the Tritons at Mariner to even their record at 1-1. Oasis takes on LaBelle in a home match Tuesday. Mariner is off to an 0-2 start.
Singles: Ralp Arvey Leyesa (M) d Eric Feichthaler 6-4, 6-1; Tyler Achilles (O) d Nathan Laws 7-6 (7-3), 6-2; Dale Saccone (O) d Gage Franklin 6-1, 6-2; John Vezzola (O) d Sergio Zarate 6-1, 6-1; Liam Greco (O) d Zach Braun 6-0, 6-0. Doubles: Leyesa/Laws (M) d Feichthaler/Achilles 8-4; Saccone/Vezzola (O) d Franklin/Zarate 8-1.
Mariner 4, Oasis 3: The Tritons (2-0) edged the Sharks (0-2), with the winner coming down to the last doubles match.
Singles: Cydney Rentsch (M) d Jackie Hair 6-1, 6-4; Sydney Mahoney (O) d Kara Perchall 6-3, 6-0; Jennifer Martinez (M) d Alyssa Mahoney 6-0, 6-3; Gianna Annarumma (M) d Allison Sieber 6-2, 6-1; AnnaMarie Pommerehne (O) d Krysta Perez 6-4, 6-1. Doubles: Hair/Sydney Mahoney (O) d Rentsch/Martinez 8-4; Perchall/Annarumma (M) d Mahoney/Sieber 8-6.