Woodall, Rosario help St. Anthony's Win

Reporter Brian Towey has the story on a game between St. Anthony's and Our Savior New American ...

JERSEY CITY, N.J. _ A scheduling change due to weather pushed the start of the annual meeting between St. Anthony of Jersey City and Our Savior New American to 5 p.m, up from its original 7 p.m. start on Tuesday, which translated into a light turnout and kept the college coaches away.

However, the hosts beat the snow and an emerging big man, using a decisive second half push spearheaded by junior guards Mike Rosario and Travon Woodall to pull away from OSNA 86-71.

After 7-foot-2 sophomore John Riek Suas, a new arrival for OSNA from the Sudan, caused problems inside for St. Anthony in the first half with his length, inside touch (10 points), and defensive presence, keeping OSNA as close as 39-38 with a three-point play with 1:15 to play in the second quarter, the Friars came out with renewed energy and purpose after the break.

Woodall (pictured in story) opened the half with a three and leaked out for a transition basket. Rosario connected from deep and 6-foot-4 sophomore Andre Tucker angled to the rim for two, followed by another Rosario triple. When the smoke cleared, St. Anthony had reeled off a 14-7 run in a little under three minutes to open up a 58-45 lead, enough separation that OSNA would not seriously threaten again.

Woodall led St. Anthony with 25 points, including 14 in the second half, while shooting 11-for-12 from the line. He got to the rim and showed good touch on his jumper.

Rosario closed with 23, with 13 after the break, including a number of key shots from long-range. Senior Chris Gaston pitched in with 10 points, while juniors Jiovanny Fontan and A.J. Rogers added nine each.

For OSNA, Riek was the revelation. He has only been in the country since mid-January, but has shown enough promise that high majors are already poking around. Riek finished with 17 points, 10 rebounds, and seven blocks.

He was active defensively, rejecting and altering shots, if a little bit overzealous at times, but had a huge impact on the game. On the offensive end he got plenty of touches, and showed the ability to catch, turn, and score at close range. He's pretty mobile for a seven-footer, and has a tremendous wingspan. A limited number of college coaches have laid eyes on him, but of those that have DePaul, Pittsburgh, and Georgia Tech have shown early interest, with Arizona also inquiring.

Enrique Cova Benitez, OSNA's unsigned senior point, got the big guys involved and controlled tempo, finishing with 10 points, seven assists, and four steals. Sidelined by an ankle injury that kept him out of a number of tournaments earlier in the season, he appears to be one of the better unsigned point guards in the New York area, and a guy who is flying under the radar a little bit.

Wing Gerardo Suero Castillo, a recent arrival from the Dominican Republic, scored 16 points for OSNA, while junior wing guard Angel Castro added 14 points after getting hot from behind the arc in the second half, hitting four three-pointers.

Teeng Akol, held largely in check by St. Anthony, finished with 11 points, four rebounds, and two blocks, shooting 3-for-4 from the line.


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