Advantage Herbert Morrison
Double ISSA Western Conference High School basketball champions Herbert Morison Technical are in pole position after Game One of their best-of-three finals on Wednesday, outlasting a spirited Cornwall College in both the Under-16 and U-19 categories at the Montego Bay Cricket Club court.
The Dave Black-coached Herbert Morrison stopped Cornwall College by a comfortable 65-50 margin to win the senior match-up.
But they were made to work much harder in the junior section by a Cornwall College side that was bent on turning the tables on the Herbert Morrison juggernaut. Herbert Morrison ultimately prevailed by a narrow 53-50 margin for the advantage heading into Game Two of the series.
The reliable shooting guard, Ralique Grant, was in awesome form for his team, ending with a game-high 34 points.
Grant, who is in line for the season's MVP award, also had three rebounds, six steals, and three assists.
Fellow guard Tafari Vassell added 12 points and 12 rebounds in a double-double effort for Herbert Morrison as Herbert Morrison sped off to a whirlwind 13-point lead (18-5) after just one quarter.
Cornwall College rallied through Antonio Spence, especially in the second quarter. Spence eventually ended as his team's top scorer with 16 points and pulled down 14 rebounds.
But it was the defending champions all the way as they dominated all quarters, except in the fourth, as Spence and Leonardo Friginette threatened to wrest Game One from them. Friginette also recorded a double-double, hitting 15 points and 13 rebounds.
In the end, Herbert Morrison had enough to post the victory, after posting (18-5, 15-12, 16-11 and 16-22) quarterly returns.
It was not so comfortable for them, however, in the Under-16 category as Ojay Marshall and Alwade Thompson of Cornwall partnered superbly in trying to secure the much-needed win.
Marshall's 17 points and three rebounds and that of Thompson (12 points), propelled Cornwall College to within touching distance of a victory, but Herbert Morrison's star shooter, Shaqueal Benti's 17 points output, led the way.
Benti was supported in the win by Ryheem Barrett, 13 points, while Davaughn Campbell chipped in with a useful 10 points, four rebounds, and eight steals.