GC boys win on road,<br>but lose at home

GC VILLAGE — The full-court press, lack of experience on the bench and the top player in foul trouble. It all added up to a 76-57 victory for St. Michael over Grand Canyon Saturday night in a Class 1A North Region matchup.

Grand Canyon's Miles Hunter (No. 25) prays for the basketball to fall through the hoop in an unbalanced shot in the paint against St. Michael.

Coming off a 75-20 track meet over Northland Prep in Flagstaff the previous evening, the Phantoms were hoping to make it three wins in four tries in only the second home game this season Saturday.

For most of the first half, it looked like the game would go down to the wire. But late in the second quarter, top scorer and rebounder Mitchell Walker found himself on the bench with three fouls. St. Michael took advantage of the situation.

"It was like panic city," Grand Canyon coach Dan Lopez said. "We had three freshmen, a junior and Mike (Vincent) on the court. We called two timeouts, tried to set up plays. It was panic city."

Grand Canyon had battled back from an early deficit to tie the game, 25-25, with 2:29 left in the first half. In those last few minutes, the Cardinals went on a 9-2 run to go into the locker room with momentum.

The Phantoms could not counter the relentless St. Michael attack as the visitors ended up taking a 19-point lead by the end of the third quarter. Grand Canyon made a few runs in the fourth, but the deficit was too big

"That's probably the most pressure we'll see this year," Lopez said about the St. Michael defense. "It was pretty intense."

The Cardinals came out with a full-court press after the opening tip-off and went up 7-0 only 50 seconds into the game. Grand Canyon was able to stay in the game with a barrage of three-pointers. In fact, all 12 Phantoms points in the opening eight minutes came on shots beyond the three-point arch — two by Mitchell Walker, one each by Richardson Tisi and Tempy Walker.

Grand Canyon settled down through the first four minutes of the second quarter to play some of its best ball this season. The Walker brothers, Michael Vincent and Nate Bitsui all found the hoop to give the Phantoms its first lead of the game at 23-21.

St. Michael finished the quarter with a big run and then took control of the game in the second half, many points coming on easy drives to the basket for layups.

Despite limited minutes because of the fouls, Mitchell Walker ended up scoring 26 points, which included four three-pointers and an 8-for-8 effort at the free-throw line.

Grand Canyon whipped Northland Prep in a laugher on Friday by 55 points. Mitchell Walker led with 23 points in about two quarters of playing time. Incredibly, every player on the varsity roster scored in the win.

"A lot of young kids got to play," said Lopez, adding that the JV played the whole second half. "Ed (Hazlett), Robert (Stickler) and Juan Davila all did a good job."

Grand Canyon (2-2, 5-7) hits the road this week for games at Seligman on Friday and Mayer on Saturday.

Summaries

GRAND CANYON 73,

NORTHLAND PREP 20

Friday at Flagstaff

Scoring by quarters:

Grand Canyon 25 19 16 15—75

Northland Prep 2 8 8 2—20

Grand Canyon Scoring:

Mitchell Walker 9 2-4 23, Michael Vincent 4 0-0 8, Richardson Tisi 2 1-1 6, Nate Bitsui 3 0-0 6, Tempy Walker 2 2-3 6, Miguel Davila 2 0-0 4, Robert Stickler 3 0-0 6, Brian Skeet 1 0-0 2, Juan Davila 1 2-2 4, Jacob Wahler 1 0-0 2, Ed Hazlett 1 1-4 3, Miles Hunter 2 1-3 5. Totals 31 9-17 75.

Three-point goals: M. Walker 3, Tisi.

ST. MICHAEL 76, GRAND CANYON 57

Saturday at Grand Canyon

Scoring by quarters:

St. Michael 18 16 25 17—76

Grand Canyon 12 15 13 17—57

Grand Canyon Scoring:

Richardson Tisi 2 0-0 5, Mitchell Walker 7 8-8 26, Tempy Walker 2 0-0 6, Michael Vincent 4 0-3 8, Nate Bitsui 2 0-0 4, Miles Hunter 3 0-4 6, Miguel Davila 0 2-4 2. Totals 20 10-19 57.

Three-point goals: M. Walker 4, T. Walker 2, Tisi.

Comments

Comments are not posted immediately. Submissions must adhere to our Use of Service Terms of Use agreement. Rambling or nonsensical comments may not be posted. Comment submissions may not exceed a 200 word limit, and in order for us to reasonably manage this feature we may limit excessive comment entries.

Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.