2018-19 CRC Tournament >> Results Press Coverage
Cancer Research Classic
WHEELING, W.Va., Jan. 4, 2019 -- Game 2 of the weekend featured our first matchup of national powers as McEachern, who is ranked No. 2 by USA Today, met Findlay Prep out of Henderson, Nevada.
The game started with both teams feeling each other out and trading buckets, and it appeared McEachern was going to surge ahead and take control of the game in the 2nd quarter taking a 10-point lead. Though, the Pilots had other ideas, after trailing for nearly the entire 2nd stanza Findlay knotted the game at 34 in the 3rd quarter. Rodney Haddix’s team was never able to secure the lead in the quarter, but managed to even the count at 49 in the final frame and eventually took the lead on a PJ Fuller lay in with 5:34 to play in the game.
However, Mike Thompson’s team would respond in a way worthy of its ranking with an 11-2 run to close out the contest behind three straight buckets from Auburn signee Isaac Okoro giving the Indians a six-point lead. Senior Alyn Breed would follow with a three-pointer and highly touted junior point guard Sharife Cooper sealed the 60-53 win with a pair of freebies to move McEachern’s record to (11-0).
The team played to a 14 all score following one quarter of play. Cooper scored eight points in the first eight minutes, while Findlay Prep’s Raymond Hawkins produced seven counters.
Senior Quinton McElroy extended McEachern’s lead in the 2nd quarter to 27-17 on a made three-pointer before the Pilots’ Taryn Todd got going. The lefty answered with two inside baskets and a triple, while teammate Blaise Beauchamp added a bucket to close out the half and cut the Indians advantage to 30-29.
The 2nd half and more so the 3rd quarter was the Okoro show. The powerful and explosive senior put on a scoring clinic with six buckets including two dunks and a bonus goal helping his team to a 49-41 lead.
Okoro finished with 24 points on 10-of-18 shooting and added 11 rebounds earning him MVP honors. Cooper, who struggled from the field (6-of-18), finished the game with 16 points, nine assists, and eight rebounds. McElroy and Breed evenly split 18 markers in the win.
Fuller (TCU commit) led Findlay Prep with 15 points, five rebounds, and four assists. Beauchamp added 13 points and six rebounds, but was just 4-of-16 from the field. Todd totaled 11 points and nine boards.
The two teams combined to shoot 11-of-42 from the three-point range.