Washington, DC- With 0.6 seconds left in the epic basketball game between DeMatha (MD) and St. John’s (DC), the Cadets had the basketball on their side of the court. Guard Anthony Cowan inbound the ball to his teammate Dejaun Clayton. Clayton missed a lay up at the buzzer and he laid on the ground in disbelief as the Cadets lost to DeMatha 59-57.
“We have been through a lot of tough times this year already,” DeMatha head coach Mike Jones said. It was a close game throughout. The Cadets opened the first quarter with on a 8-0 run before the Stags start crawling back. Led by combo guard Ryan Allen, DeMatha came back to take a 16-15 lead at the end of the first quarter.
St. John’s flip the script in the second quarter as they took a 29-27 going into half. Maryland commit Anthony Cowan had impressive first half. He finished with 13 points and he was shooting well from behind the arc. The Cadets came out of the break hot. They went on a 9-2 run to give them a 38-29 lead. Once again, DeMatha charged back. The Stags went on a 14-2 run to tie the game at 41.
In the final minutes of the game, DJ Harvey converted a lay up while he was fouled to make it a 53-51 game. With 2:05 left, Markelle Fultz was fouled and made two free throws to give his team a 54-53 lead. When DeMatha got the ball back, Ryan Allen knocked down his third three-pointer of the game to give DeMatha a 57-53. Anthony answered right back with a three pointer to cut DeMatha’s lead to 57-56.
After Markelle Fultz turned the basketball over, Anthony Cowan tried to hit a jump shot to give his team the lead but he missed. DeMatha’s Nate Darling made two free throws to extend DeMatha’s lead to 59-56. St. John’s Jeff Dowtin was fouled and sent to the free throw line. He made the first shot, missed the second but the Cadets were able to recover the ball. Cowan inbounded the ball to Dejaun Clayton. Dejuan tried to make a lay up in the buzzer that would have tied the game but missed. DeMatha held on to win.
“We have been in position where we had to be resilient and tonight was one of those nights,” DeMatha’s head coach Mike Jones said. “I think our experience, the way we practice, and the competition we face this year is the reason we were able to prevail.”
First year starter Ryan Allen continues to impress. He led DeMatha in scoring with 16 points and made key shots that helped his team come away as victors. “It’s great for his confidence,” Mike Jones said talking about Ryan Allen development as a starter.
Markelle Fultz finished the game with 12 points and he thought the team’s defense towards the end played a big part in the victory. “Everyone else did a good job boxing out and making sure their man wasn’t scoring,” Fultz said.
For St. John’s Anthony Cowan led the way for them. The senior scored 26 points and made six three pointers in the losing effort. “Anthony Cowan can draw a lot of fouls,” Fultz said. “He can shoot the ball and get to the rim.” Dejuan Clayton scored 11 points which was second best on the team. Jeff Dowtin had a hard time shooting the ball as he finished with 5 points.
DeMatha is now 13-2 and 6-0 in the WCAC. “We are number one now and the only team that doesn’t have a lost in the conference,” Fultz said. “We just want to take it game by game and try not to lose any games in the conference.”
Ryan McFadden is a freshman at Iona College and alumni from DeMatha Catholic High School. He is the founder of Inside The Locker Room and sports writer for the Ionian. Follow him on Twitter @RMcFadden15.
Follow Inside The Locker Room on Twitter @lockerroom2015.