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Crusader basketball pulls away from Waco Parkview

While St. John is on the cusp of a .500 record, it’s in far better shape where district play is concerned.
The Crusaders (12-13, 4-1) earned a season sweep over Waco Parkview on Tuesday in a 47-31 home victory. St. John won every quarter and was at its best in the early going.
“We wanted to start the night off on the right foot,” said coach Cody O’Daniel.
“Overall, I thought the guys played a good game.”
Thomas Miller led the way with 16 points, nine rebounds, four steals and two blocks as Paul Fuqua (12 points, rebound, five assists, three steals) also reached double figures. Fellow Crusaders Thomas Phillips (seven points, three rebounds, assist, steal), John Sampson (six points, eight rebounds, three steals) and Kenny Janousek (three points, six rebounds, two assists, three steals) each made their mark.
Opportunistic defense was key in the team’s early surge as St. John tallied five first-quarter steals. Sampson and Janousek each snagged a pair, as Sampson also piled up six rebounds in the frame. Miller had a sweet pass fake for an easy layup while Phillips made good on a three-point play with just one second left for a 15-8 advantage.
“John has played so well this year that you expect a good game from him every time,” O’Daniel said.
“He’s so important for us on the boards. I like to see that we’re aware of the clock in a situation like that and [Phillips] went strong to the basket.
“We did give up some easy baskets in the press and it’s a work in progress. I felt that our offense would pick up the slack tonight.”
The second quarter saw Fuqua drill a three in the opening moments as he also assisted Janousek and Miller on baskets. Freshman Cody Zmolik came in off the bench and quickly tallied a trio of rebounds for his team. Miller was all over the court as he finished the first half with nine points, three steals and two blocks to give St. John a 25-15 lead.
“Thomas is a [defensive] presence in the middle with his long arms,” O’Daniel said.
“Paul is seeing the floor very well. I want him to stay aggressive taking the ball to the basket so teams don’t know what to expect. Cody has learned a lot and we’re pleased with his contributions.”
St. John was at its best defensively in the third with six points allowed and Janousek made sure to stay involved with a steal and an assist to Phillips. Fuqua drilled another three on a Phillips assist as St. John headed to the fourth quarter up 36-21.
“Kenny has really stepped up in district and he’s very intense on defense,” the coach said.
Parkview surprisingly found its most offensive success in the fourth quarter despite seven steals by St. John, including three from Fuqua and two courtesy of Nolan Vrana. Miller capped off his strong showing with a lay-in off a Vrana assist while Vrana knocked down a three pointer for the blue team to ensure the comfortable margin of victory.
“Nolan gives such great effort out there and I’m very pleased with his play. Thomas [Miller] is doing a lot for our team and he had an excellent game tonight.”
St. John will now host Poetry Country School of Terrell on Friday at 7 p.m.
“Defense remains our biggest area to focus on improving and that’s important with some key games coming up,” O’Daniel said.

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Posted by on Jan 23 2008. Filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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