rebounds and five assists as the Bombers secured a 60-53 win over Elder
in a Greater Catholic League South rivalry game on Friday. Guard Ryan Shiverdecker pitched in with 11 points and four
rebounds, while forward Walt Gibler had 10 points with five boards for
St. Xavier (18-1, 12-1 GCL South).
CINCINNATI – Senior guard Brad Loesing lead St. Xavier with 14 points, six rebounds and five assists as the Bombers secured a 60-53 win over Elder in a Greater Catholic League South rivalry game on Friday.
Guard Ryan Shiverdecker pitched in with 11 points and four rebounds, while forward Walt Gibler had 10 points with five boards for St. Xavier (18-1, 12-1 GCL South) who is No. 2 in the Cincinnati Enquirer Division I coaches’ poll and No. 3 in the Associated Press state poll.
Elder senior forward Kyle Rudolph had a double-double scoring 14 points and grabbing 13 rebounds in a losing effort for the Panthers.
Rudolph for the most part was well-contained by the St. Xavier defense, who held the big man under his season average and made him uncomfortable down low most of the game.
“We had to get Rudolph contained because he can hurt you fast,” said St. X coach Scott Martin.
The containment of Rudolph lead the way for the Bombers, especially in the first half when St. X led 27-19.
St. Xavier was actually able to outmuscle the rest of the Panthers inside for key offensive rebounds that lead to quick lay-ups. The Bombers seemed to be in the right place to get the ball and control the tempo.
This would help down the stretch when St. X would tighten up defensively and make it tough for Elder (14-4, 8-4) to get good shots which set up the Bomber offense.
“We controlled them and their defense in the fourth quarter,” Martin said of his team’s effort down the stretch. “We made them come at us defensively.”
St. Xavier lead the entire game though Elder got close to taking the lead after a Rudolph two-handed dunk to cut the Bomber lead to 12-11 early in the first quarter.
After the half Elder cut the lead to 35-32 when sophomore forward Alex Welch made a steal and passed to junior Josh Jones for a lay-up. Jones finished the game with 13 points.
Elder would not get any closer as they closed the gap to make it 56-53 with seven seconds left. That’s when Elder coach Joel Schoenfeld was called for a technical foul for coming on to the court after Loesing was fouled from behind by sophomore forward Alex Welch.
Down the stretch Elder committed several key turnovers that led to St. X baskets and came up cold at the free throw line.
“We’re playing real hard but not very efficiently,” Schoenfeld said. “We need to improve our passing and have less turnovers.”
Elder had turnovers on back-to-back possessions with less than two minutes left in the game, which put them at a disadvantage when the final seconds were running.
“They (St. X) were better in taking care of the ball, give them a lot of credit,” Schoenfeld said.
St. Xavier will take this hard earned victory into next Friday’s big showdown with Moeller, whom they suffered their only loss to 63-54 on Dec. 14.
Martin feels that his resilient Bombers can find a way to beat a team they have not defeated in almost two seasons.
“Our team has found ways to win games,” Martin said. “Tonight the team
gathered and did what they needed to do to finish the game.”
Elder plays McNicholas and LaSalle next week at home to finish up their conference schedule.