LORAIN — St. Ignatius appeared to be every bit the eighth-ranked team in the state, jumping on Lorain early and never letting up in a 72-38 victory Saturday night.
St. Ignatius used a precision offense, smothering defense and every player scored in the non-conference game. A 20-3 run that stretched between the first two quarters gave the Wildcats a double-digit lead they never relinquished.
“They established control of the game right away, and to take that control away from them is a tall task,” Lorain coach Andy Bastock said. “Our team is not ready to play at that level. They are loaded and are a team that’s ready to make a state run, and right now we are not.
“We had our hands full. They go deep, they’re well-coached and are disciplined defensively. They took us out of a lot of stuff we wanted to do, and have done all year, offensively. They have a good team and have a really good shot to go very far in the tournament.”
St. Ignatius (8-2) has six players that stand 6-foot-5 or taller, and the Titans (2-7), with only senior forward Louis Cheers at 6-5, could not match up with the Wildcats’ size.
St. Ignatius outrebounded Lorain 38-23 and finished with 12 blocked shots.
Senior forward Derek Sloan, who stands 6-5, led the Wildcats with five blocks. He said shot-blocking is just a matter of discipline.
“I know I have to time my jumps and stay disciplined because of the pump fakes,” he said. “You have to keep under control and go get it.”
The St. Ignatius defense held Lorain to a season-low 38 points and held the Titans to just 29.5 percent shooting (13-of-44). Lorain trailed by 25 points at halftime.
“Lorain is very athletic and they have a good mix of guards and bigs, so our focus coming in was on team defense,” St. Ignatius coach Sean O’Toole said. “We knew we had to get better team defense and we lost a couple of games last weekend because our team defense wasn’t very good.
“That’s where basketball starts, at that defensive end of the floor. We did a great job of limiting their point-blank opportunities and their attacks of the rim. We also rebounded well.”
On the second night of back-to-back games, O’Toole knew his team had to get off to a good start.
“Any time you’re on the road you want a quick start,” he said. “We have a ton of back-to-backs, so we’re used to this. We play such a good schedule that no one is going to throw something at us we haven’t seen and can’t adjust to. They threw some different things at us defensively, and I think our kids did a great job of adjusting and attacking appropriately.”
Cheers led Lorain with 13 points and, along with 6-4 sophomore forward Rashod Berry, grabbed five rebounds. Cheers added four blocked shots.
“Cheers is a great player,” Sloan said. “I played against him in AAU during the summer and he’s really athletic and can handle the ball. He has a lot of different skills. He’s tough to guard.”
David Black, a 6-5 junior, led the Wildcats with 13 points.
The St. Ignatius bench outscored the Lorain bench, 28-11.
• Last season St. Ignatius defeated Lorain, 73-60.
• Heading into Saturday night’s game, the WIldcats had dropped two of their last three games.
• In the game, St. Ignatius went on scoring runs of 20-3, 8-0 (twice), 6-0 and 16-2.
Contact Mike Perry at 329-7135 or email@example.com.
St. Ignatius 72, Lorain 38
ST. IGNATIUS (72): Danny Bova 3-0-6, Alec Papesch 4-3-11, Francisco Santiago 5-0-11, Kyle Berger 2-1-6, Derek Sloan 4-1-9, Austin Sterpka 0-0-0, David Black 6-0-13, Bryan Fisher 1-0-2, Eric Black 0-2-2, Jaylin McDonald 1-0-2, Isiah Barbra 1-1-3, Jake Strippy 1-0-2, Ryan Napoli 1-0-3, James Abraham 0-1-1, Stephen McDonnell 0-1-1. Totals 29-10-72.
LORAIN (38): Luis Cheers 6-1-13, Eddie Williamson 0-3-3, Andre Phillips 1-0-2, Sherman Saunders 3-2-9, Rashod Berry 0-0-0, Andrew Ralston 1-2-5, Gerald Howard 0-0-0, Demon Hisle 2-0-6, Brandon Rodriguez 0-0-0. Totals 13-8-38.
St. Ignatius 18 20 20 14 — 72
Lorain 7 6 11 14 — 38
Three-point goals: St. Ignatius 4-9 (Santiago, Berger, D. Black, Napoli), Lorain 4-18 (Hisle 2, Ralston, Saunders). Field goals: St. Ignatius 29-52 (55.7 percent), Lorain 13-44 (29.5 percent); Free throws: St. Ignatius 10-17 (58.8 percent), Lorain 8-14 (57.1 percent). Rebounds: St. Ignatius 38 (D. Black 8), Lorain 23 (Cheers, Berry 5). Turnovers: St. Ignatius 12, Lorain 18. Total fouls: St. Ignatius 11, Lorain 15. Fouled out: None.
Junior varsity: St. Ignatius, 53-38.