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Marauders use big runs to get past Crusaders

CCC goes on runs of 18-0 and 10-0 to pick up a 3A-11 win over TC.

By ERIC MUSKATEVC

© St. Petersburg Times, published January 20, 2001


CLEARWATER -- Consistently inconsistent might best describe Clearwater Central Catholic on Friday. In their 60-51 win over Class 3A, District 11 rival Tampa Catholic, the Marauders were up and down, eventually ending on a high. It wasn't exactly run-and-gun basketball, but what CCC did have were two double-digit runs. Although the Marauders appeared in control for much of the game, Tampa Catholic was never more than 12 points behind.

Tampa Catholic opened the game with nine consecutive points, leading 11-4 after the first quarter. But it wasn't until a minute was left in the second quarter that the Crusaders scored their 12th point. Spanning the first and second quarters, CCC unleashed an 18-0 run, with C.J. Schmidt and Marcus Edwards hitting two three-pointers to help give the Marauders a 20-15 halftime lead.

"We shared the ball very well tonight," CCC coach Bart Citro said. "We changed some things, some offensive structures which helped the tempo and increased the intensity and helped turn the ball over."

Leading by two a minute into the third quarter, CCC pumped out another run. Edwards hit his third three-pointer and was fouled on the play, sparking a 10-0 run. "Tampa Catholic is a very talented team," Citro said.

"They came at us all night long, and it was pretty much a backcourt game."

Despite the run, the Crusaders trailed just 40-34 at the end of the third quarter. CCC controlled the ball and slowed down the tempo in the fourth quarter to hold on for the win despite Tampa Catholic's James Dennis, who hit two three-pointers among his 10 fourth-quarter points.

CCC's freshman Chip Brinkman scored all eight of his points in the second half, as did teammate Chris Zumwalt.

Dennis finished with a game-high 28 points and nine rebounds. Edwards led CCC with 18 points while Schmidt added 12.

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