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Saints' game amazing to Grace

January 13, 2006|by TIM KOELBLE

koelble@herald-mail.com

After winning three games last season, St. James matched that output for the current campaign inside of one week with a 64-44 victory over Grace Academy on Thursday night, its fifth win in eight games.

It was the second win in 24 hours for the Saints, who were a bit lethargic after an emotional double-overtime victory over Maret School on Wednesday.

"We were tired, a little worn down," said St. James coach Mike Brooks.

Shannon Strange, who scored 34 points and suffered ankle and toe injuries against Maret, withstood the pain and led the Saints with 16 points and seven assists.

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With the Saints looking to establish their game, Perry Titus-Glover came off the bench with energy, working both ends of the floor and getting eight of his 11 points in the first half as St. James took a 30-19 lead.

"I know it is important for me to hustle (coming off the bench) and to play good defense, too," said Titus-Glover. "I was still excited (tonight) from the night before and wanted to carry it over. My focus is to go crazy when I get in."

"(Titus-Glover) was the difference," said Brooks. "Last year he was playing sparingly and this year he worked hard to put himself in a position to make an impact.

Only a 13-point first half by Zack Koontz kept the Knights (6-8) within striking distance, but his scoreless second half magnified the absence of Jamie Heckman, a 6-3 center who suffered a sprained ankle earlier this week.

"We could have used the size with (Heckman)" said Grace coach Jim Fahey. "(St. James) made adjustments on Koontz and when they made changes we didn't do a good job recognizing their defense."

Even so, Grace charged to within 36-30 with 3:20 to play in the third period with two 3-pointers by Jim Horochowski and a baseline drive by Jake Reese.

After a timeout, two free throws by Titus-Glover and buckets by Nik Holtz and Colin McWilliams pushed the lead back to 42-31.

"When we are six down we are very much in the game," said Fahey, "but then we came out with two turnovers and (St. James) took advantage."

Titus-Glover also pulled down nine rebounds as St. James controlled the boards, 42-29. McWilliams added 11 points.

Horochowski led Grace with 17 points and Koontz pulled down 14 rebounds.

"We're a young team that works hard and we'll continue to work hard," said Fahey.

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