BOSTON -- Usually clipping the wings of an Eagle will cripple it. St. John's Prep's Kareem Davis is no ordinary Eagle.
Quincy sealed off the edges on defense which allowed Davis to drive at will, and he did just that to the tune of 28 points to power the Eagles to a 55-46 win over the Presidents at the BABC Winter Classic, at Roxbury's Reggie Lewis Center.
“Everything was opened up,” Davis said. “They were denying on the wing. I saw the feint and just kept attacking. Once I broke my man they didn't really no bigs to contest so I just kept attacking them.”
While Davis shined, the road was riddled with bumps for the Eagles. After opening up a 12-point lead late in the second quarter, the Eagles seemed poised to pull away, but the Presidents kept picking away at the lead.
Quincy was able to slice the deficit down to one three times in the third quarter only to see it balloon back to four or five. Davis' only three, right at the end of the third, made it a four-point game heading into the fourth.
“They have all seniors and they've been through this for three, four years,” St. John's Prep coach John Dullea said of Quincy. “They're not the type of team that's going to crawl [away] when you're up by eight points. They're a very strong, senior-laden team. Nothing's going to rattle game. We kept saying we can't let them hang around, and they did until the last three minutes or so when we picked up our pressure and got some easy baskets.”
Quincy rode the wave of J.T. Bain throughout the game. Bain netted a team-high 17 points while pulling down a game-high 15 rebounds. He had three assists, all on backdoor layups.
“He's solid, he's consistent, he keeps us in games,” Quincy coach David Parry said of Bain. “He's a throwback player. When the outside stuff's not dropping we know we can rely on him on the inside, and we like to dump into him and let him do his thing. He's got some inside moves that we didn't teach him. He brought them himself and worked on himself. I thought he kept us in the game frankly.”
Bain may have been a force, but Prep's depth inside proved to be too much. Harry O'Neil had a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds. Tyson Johnson came off the bench and buzzed around the paint to the tune of seven points and five rebounds.
Despite being in foul trouble, Jake Burt was able to pull down three rebounds and alter even more shots. Prep won the battle of the boards 33-27.
“There aren't as many kids as big and physical as Jake,” Dullea said. “Harry's a big body in general. We try to get them the ball, especially early, to establish that inside presence. Jake was in foul trouble, which he can be at times, but on the boards we feel we should own them because those two big bodies, when they're boxing out they are tough to get around.”