A snap for Gators: Defense clamps down on Central Catholic in 49-39 win for Class AAAA boys title

March 4, 2012 11:55 am
  • Gateway is the first team to win back-to-back titles in Class AAAA since New Castle in the late 1990s.
    Gateway is the first team to win back-to-back titles in Class AAAA since New Castle in the late 1990s.
  • Gateway's Tyler Scott dunks against Central Catholic in the Class AAAA championship game Saturday night at Palumbo Center.
    Gateway's Tyler Scott dunks against Central Catholic in the Class AAAA championship game Saturday night at Palumbo Center.
  • Gateway's Thomas Kromka blocks a shot by Central Catholic's Mike Anselmo.
    Gateway's Thomas Kromka blocks a shot by Central Catholic's Mike Anselmo.
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Central Catholic did not have a player in double figures. Senior center Claude Scott led with nine points.

In the first half, Central Catholic was out of sync offensively, and Gateway pounded the Vikings on the inside with Harris and Kromka. Harris made some nice post moves and scored eight points and Kromka powered his way around the basket for 10 points.

Central Catholic committed nine turnovers and shot 24 percent (4 of 17) from the field. Gateway shot 59 percent (13 of 22).

Gateway led by only 12-11 after the first quarter, but the Gators took control of the game in the second, behind Kromka and Harris. Gateway went on a 9-2 run, and Harris' basket gave the Gators a 21-13 lead with 4:15 left in the half. They extended the advantage to 28-14 at halftime.

Things didn't get any better for Central Catholic in the third quarter as the Vikings made only 1 of 7 shots. They went 8 minutes, 10 seconds without a field goal from the second to third quarters. Gateway's Scott made a deep 3-pointer to start the second half, and the Gators eventually opened a 35-14 lead with 4:48 left in the third quarter.

Gateway took a 41-22 lead into the fourth before Central Catholic came back to make things a little interesting. The Vikings went on an 11-3 run to slice the deficit to 43-33 with 3:53 left. The Vikings failed to score on four consecutive possessions that could've cut the lead even further. They missed three 3-pointers on those four possessions.

Davis scored on a steal and layup to make it 43-35 with 1:19 left, but the Vikings got no closer.

"They ran a scramble at us, and we turned it over a few times in the fourth quarter," Adams said.

But the defense made sure it didn't matter.

For more on high school sports, go to "Varsity Blog" at www.post-gazette.com/varsityblog. Mike White: mwhite@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1975. Twitter @mwhiteburgh
First Published 2012-03-04 11:40:20

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