Bishop Gorman, Findlay Prep score upsets in Hoopball Classic


Bishop Gorman senior Shabazz Muhammad admitted he was pretty hyped up for Monday's nationally televised game.

He wasted little time putting that energy to use.

Muhammad made a steal and went in for a dunk for the game's first points, and the Gaels went on to defeat DeMatha (Md.) 73-65 in the Hoophall Classic at Springfield, Mass.

DeMatha (16-1) entered ranked No. 3 in the nation by USA Today for the game aired by ESPNU.

"My adrenaline was flowing and really ready for the game," Muhammad said. "I got a couple dunks early and really was ready to go."

Muhammad finished with 37 points and six rebounds. Seven of his 12 field goals were dunks.

"This means a lot," Muhammad said. "It was a great win for us. We've been playing tough teams all year long, and we got a big win tonight, which is great for us."

It wasn't the only nationally televised victory by a Nevada team at the Hoophall event Monday.

Findlay Prep, ranked No. 6 by USA Today, followed the Gaels by rolling to a 75-50 blowout of second-ranked Simeon (Ill.).

"I'm excited and happy that we played the way we're capable of," Findlay coach Michael Peck said. "Hopefully it gives us some momentum and is a prelude to how we're going to play the rest of the way."

Gorman (12-3) never trailed against DeMatha and led by as much as 13 after a transition dunk by Rosco Allen that made it 39-26 with 6:13 to go in the third quarter.

DeMatha was able to hang around, nailing four 3-pointers in the third quarter, and eventually trimmed the deficit to two on a pair of free throws by Jairus Lyles with 4:13 left in the game.

But a three-point play by Muhammad ignited a 13-2 run that iced the game.

"We really focused on trying to slow them down," Gorman coach Grant Rice said. "They have really good big guys, but they also have really good guards. We kind of controlled the tempo."

Allen had a big game, finishing with 18 points, nine rebounds and four assists.

"It's really good to see Rosco (play well), and Shabazz needs that help," Rice said. "Rosco showed how good he can be. And Ronnie Stanley, as well, was just huge for us."

One of Allen's four assists came on a one-handed tip pass to Muhammad for a windmill slam with 31 seconds left that punctuated the win. Stanley added nine points, eight rebounds, three assists and two blocked shots.

Lyles led DeMatha with 17 points and seven rebounds.

Findlay (17-1) was without one of its top players, as forward Anthony Bennett sat out because of an injured hamstring, but the Pilots dominated Simeon (14-1).

Dominic Artis had 21 points, seven rebounds, eight assists and four steals to lead the way.

"He played huge for us," Peck said. "It's nice to have him kind of have that breakout performance."

Nigel Williams-Goss added 18 points, Winston Shepard had 16 points, five rebounds and four assists, and Brandon Ashley had 13 points and nine rebounds.

The Pilots consistently got to the basket, both in transition and in the half-court offense. They made 30 of 49 field goals (61.2 percent).

"It's huge against a team like that," Peck said of attacking the basket. "You challenge their second line of defense and see how they're going to play it. That really sets the tone and gets them on their heels and opens up the perimeter game."

Jabari Parker, ranked by ESPNU as the No. 1 junior prospect nationally, had 24 points and 12 rebounds for Simeon, which shot 19-for-56 from the field (33.9 percent) and 4-for-24 on 3-pointers.

 

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