January 19, 2019

Boys Basketball Stumbles Into Home Stretch

Hayden Compton’19 drives for a lay-up. Inji Kang’19/Media

Coming off its first loss of the season, the CA boys basketball team was looking to recover with a pair of wins. Instead, Academy’s struggles continued, as the Vikings fell to both Whitehall and Grandview Heights.

The Vikes hosted Whitehall on Monday, February 5, and came up short against the Rams, 55-48. After its worst scoring output of the year, it seemed as though CA had regained its offensive firepower to begin the game. The Vikings connected on 3 of their first 4 attempts and raced ahead to an early lead. The Rams quickly answered, knocking down several tough shots to close the gap to 14-11 at the end of the first quarter.

In the second period, Whitehall put the clamps on Academy’s offense. The Vikes were held scoreless on each of their first 5 possessions, and the Rams quickly took the lead. CA fought back, but still trailed at the break, 22-21.

Whitehall came out of the locker rooms blazing hot, but junior Chris Boyle refused to back down, draining back-to-back threes to keep his team within striking distance. Boyle had 15 points to lead the Vikings. The Rams continued to score at will, and clung onto a 2-point advantage heading into the fourth quarter.

After extending its cushion in the opening minutes of the final period, Whitehall looked to be pulling away. But Academy wasn’t going anywhere. Junior Hayden Compton scored 7 straight points and Boyle drilled another triple, as the Vikes cut the deficit to 49-48 with just over 2 minutes remaining. Unfortunately, the Rams sunk their free throws down the stretch and shut down CA’s offense, pulling out a hard-fought victory.

The Vikings then traveled to Grandview Heights on Friday, February 9, looking to snap out of their funk. Though Academy led for most of the contest, the Bobcats stormed back to stun the Vikes, 55-46.

CA busted out of the gates, unleashing all of its pent-up frustration. The Vikings scored the game’s first 10 points, and were firing on all cylinders. Grandview Heights scrambled to get back into the game, but trailed by 6 at the end of the first.

The Bobcats began to mount a comeback, but junior Dorrian Moultrie quickly put it to rest, scoring 5 consecutive points for Academy. Moultrie finished with 16 points to lead the Vikes. On the other end, Grandview Heights continued to struggle against CA’s aggressive defense, and the Vikings headed to halftime with a comfortable 24-16 lead.

When the third quarter began, the Vikes looked to be in complete control. They extended their lead to 12 in the opening minutes, and the game seemed to be all but over. Then, suddenly, the Bobcats woke up. Led by brothers Luke and James Lachey, they ripped off an 18-0 run to close the period, shocking Academy.

Now trailing 38-32, the Vikings tried everything to take their lead back. Senior TJ Whitman buried back-to-back threes for CA, but Grandview Heights always seemed to have a response. In the end, the Bobcats fended off the Vikes, and picked up a monumental win.

Academy is desperate to return to its winning ways, and have several upcoming opportunities to do so. The Vikings will travel to Northridge on Monday, February 12 and host Watkins Memorial on Tuesday, February 13, before hitting the road for a rematch with Whitehall on Friday, February 16.