Phoenix, AZ - Looking back on the first meeting between Bourgade Catholic and Northwest Christian one would see Northwest erase a double-digit lead by Bourgade. Northwest beat the Golden Eagles in their first match-up, earlier this year, 61-54. Three Crusaders: Jason Cornelius, Ramsey Schantz, and Kyle Cruse scored the combined 61 points in the win. Tonight, in front of an almost capacity crowd at Bourgade, would be the reverse of the two teams' prior meeting.
Both teams are fairly unpredictable when game-time arrives. Bourgade, a streaky team, had won four straight coming into tonight's game. Northwest had gone 4-3 in their past seven contests.
Erratic play characterized the beginning half of the first quarter. Northwest made several bad passes and didn't protect the ball. Luckily for them, Bourgade's Steven Villa was having a tough time getting shots to fall. Thus, Jorge Garcia stepped into lead the Golden Eagles through the first quarter. Garcia had eight points in the first quarter and 15 total. Northwest was able to calm down mid-way through the first behind three three-point field goals, two from Jason Cornelius. The Crusaders led, 17-14, with one quarter in the books.
Northwest Christian started the second quarter with a hot hand. Behind Cornelius, Ramsey Schantz, and bench production, the Crusaders were able to increase their lead over Bourgade. Steven Villa's touch remained like ice until the waning minutes of the half. Villa ended the first half with eight points on 3-of-9 shooting, including 2-of-6 from the line. As the half came to a close, the Crusaders used excellent ball movement to eat up the clock and preserve their lead. Northwest ended the half up 30-23.As the second half began, Northwest picked up where they left off - draining shots and playing well on the defensive end. No one took into account that Stephen Villa would regain his touch after the half, scoring seven points in the third. Bourgade was able to hang in, but not by much, as the Crusaders had different weapons to give the ball. Ramsey Schantz was a force inside and Jason Cornelius shot 57% (4-of-7) from the field in the third quarter. The Crusaders extended their lead on Bourgade by outscoring the Golden Eagles 17-13 for the quarter. After three it was Northwest by eleven, 47-36.
The fourth quarter would be where the game would mimic the teams' prior meeting. Bourgade used their defense, a trademark of coach Jeff Kalk, and timely free throw shooting to gain entry back into the contest. Northwest was in foul trouble and Bourgade took full advantage. Slowly chipping away at the lead, the Golden Eagles came within one, 49-48, with 4:15 remaining in the game. Bourgade tied the game at 51 with 3:39 left and took a one point lead after a scoring drought by both sides. A Ramsey Schantz three-point play made the score 54-52 in favor of NWC with 1:22 left on the clock. Bourgade quickly tied the game at 54 and Schantz fouled out with :49 seconds left. The Golden Eagles ran the clock down and down, then Jorge Garcia drew a foul in the lane with :06 seconds on the clock. He iced both free throws giving Bourgade a 56-54 edge with six seconds left and fouls to give. After a foul, the Crusaders attempted a long throw-in that was deflected out of bounds by Bourgade with :02 seconds left. Jason Cornelius' desperation shot from the corner was off and the Bourgade Catholic Golden Eagles completed the double-digit comeback for the victory, 56-54.
Bourgade Catholic 14 9 13 20 56
Northwest Christian 17 13 17 7 54
Bourgade Catholic - FG% 20-of-43 (46.5%) - FT% 14-of-23 (60.8%) - 3PT% 2-of-10 (20%)
Steven Villa 22, Jorge Garcia 15, David Raczkowski 12, Ron Avila 6, Rabbanni FurQaan 1
Northwest Christian - FG% 22-of-47 (46.8%) - FT% 5-of-7 (71%) - 3PT% 5-of-9 (55%)
Jason Cornelius 21, Ramsey Schantz 10, Kyle Cruse 9, Ryan Nielsen 4, Steve Meyerhoff 4, Jared Hartzler 4, C.J. Gibbs 2