basketball

Duchesne guard plays for teammates, promotes a cause

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Ben Norwine displayed pinpoint passing and quick defense in Duchesne High School's 49-36 win against St. Charles West on Feb. 16. Twice in the first half, he grabbed an opponent's errant pass, dashed down the court and bounced a quick pass to teammates for easy layups.

Balanced Incarnate Word team enjoying its season

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“Whatever it takes” — speed, quickness, tough defense and rebounding — could be the slogan for the Incarnate Word basketball team this season.

The Catholic high school in north St. Louis County has a state-record eight state basketball championships, including last season. Current University of Connecticut star Napheesa Collier leads a long list of former star players. A loyal following packs the gym for home games.

Speedy Cardinal Ritter launches to victories

Cardinal Ritter College Prep’s Jaylin Hudson battled Bishop DuBourg High School’s Jailen Maxey for control of the basketball. After going into halftime with a 9-point lead, Cardinal Ritter pulled away in the second half for a 70-37 victory.

Fast-paced transitions are a hallmark this year for the Cardinal Ritter College Prep boys basketball team.

For example, against Bishop DuBourg High School Dec. 18, the Ritter team busted out after a 2-point lead in the second quarter, scampering full speed up and down the court to lead by 9 at halftime. Then the Lions of Ritter roared in the second half to a 70-37 win.

Cardinal Ritter, 9-3 on the season, scored more than 70 points seven times and 85 or more points three times so far this season.

Sports camp: What’s fun got to do with it? (Everything)

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Jeff Gaona played basketball for De Smet Jesuit High School, St. Louis University and Bellarmine University. A challenge, for sure, but nothing compared with what he faced June 22 in the St. Paul Gym in Fenton.

Gaona was encircled by about 35 mostly pint-sized players at the parish's basketball camp, each determined to take the ball from him. They succeeded in the comic-relief effort twice, and as a loser, Gaona had to do 10 push-ups each time to the chants of his victors.

Incarnate Word nets eighth state basketball title

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Using superior quickness and intense pressure on defense, Incarnate Word Academy won its record-setting eighth state basketball championship on March 18, defeating St. Pius X High School of Kansas City 59-37.

Early on in the Class 4 contest, Incarnate Word's rebounding stood out. St. Pius thrived on accurate shooting and ballhandling. In the second quarter, Incarnate Word took a 22-13 lead but St. Pius pushed forward, nearly evening the score at 22-21 at halftime.

St. Joseph’s, St. Dominic display outstanding defenses

St. Joseph’s Academy’s Mallory Stock drove past St. Dominic High School defenders Maddie Bauer, center, and Mikah Bange. St. Joseph’s topped St. Dominic 38-31.

Two girls basketball teams with bulldog defenses are heading into district playoffs after battling each other in a hard-fought contest Feb. 21.

St. Joseph's Academy pulled out a come-from-behind 38-31 win over St. Dominic High School, which had led until halfway through the last quarter.

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