tampabay.com

Warriors keep fans up on their feet

Calvary Christian passes endurance test to reach state semis.

By DOUG KATES
Published February 25, 2007


BRADENTON - Nearly 300 fans had to stand to watch Calvary Christian battle Bradenton Christian in the region finals Saturday night, but at least for Warriors fans, the long ride home was a pleasant one.

Calvary Christian (27-2) advanced to the state semifinals with an 80-70 victory over the Panthers (20-10).

More than 700 tickets were sold, and fans who had to stand endured more than just four quarters of play. In the final period, the teams combined to attempt 46 free throws. For the game, 72 free throws were attempted, there were 56 fouls and four players fouled out.

Calvary Christian coach Dave Bintz said his team works on pressure free throws in practice. He tires his team in running drills then has players hit the free-throw line. If a player misses, they have to run some more.

The work must have paid off.

Bradenton Christian led 12-11 after the first period, but Calvary Christian led 39-28 at halftime and 53-43 after three periods.

The Panthers closed to within 57-52 in the final period, but the Warriors made enough free throws and never gave up the lead.

Bintz credited his seniors for not letting up from the opening tip.

"Tonight we knew the atmosphere we were heading into and we knew we had to come out ready to play," he said.

The Warriors were led by Brian Horach with 21 points, including three 3-pointers. Christian bibi Ndongo had 20 points, while Bradenton Christian was led by David Magley with 20.