Archbishop Carroll guards Christian Silva and Christian Anglada often seemed like a blur driving to the hoop Saturday night.
Thanks to their prolific performance, they and the Bulldogs’ next drives to the basket will come at The Lakeland Center.
Silva and Anglada combined for 50 points to lead Archbishop Carroll to a 74-51 rout of visiting SLAM Academy in the Region 4-3A final and its first-ever berth in the state final four.
The Bulldogs (26-4), ranked No. 4 in the state by Source Hoops in Class 3A will take on No. 3 Windemere Prep at 8 p.m. in a state semifinal on Tuesday in Lakeland.
"This is extremely special for us and I thank coach for having confidence in us and our ability to attack the rim the way we do," Anglada said.
Silva, a junior, poured in 28 points and went 9 of 11 from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter to help the Bulldogs seal the win with a 16-2 run to end the game. Anglada, a senior, finished with 22 points and four steals.
After the game, the two ran to midcourt with the rest of their teammates to hoist the school’s first regional championship trophy – a goal that coach Juan Hernandez dreamed about for his team when he returned to Carroll two seasons ago after a brief time coaching at FIU.
"I love these guys so much and this is such a good group that’s close and plays so hard for me," said Hernandez, who had coached at Carroll for three seasons prior to his current head coaching stint at the school. "We have no size so we have to open up the floor and use our advantage which is speed. We’re resilient and we were able to withstand SLAM’s pressure."
SLAM (22-5), which was making its first appearance in a regional final, trailed throughout but cut Carroll’s lead to 46-42 with two minutes left in the third quarter thanks largely to John Brown’s 14 points and Deandre Bain’s 12 points.
Carroll used an 11-2 run to push the lead back to double-digits and retake control for good.
SLAM (22-5): K. Tyler 7, L. Tyler 4, Fuentes 6, Brooks 4, Brown 14, Bain 12, Fisher 4. AC (26-4): Aarestrup 1, Cordero 5, Miralles 3, Deribeaux 8, Anglada 22, Garcia 7, Silva 28. Half: Fouled out: K. Tyler, L. Tyler. Three-pointers: Silva 2, Deribeaux 2, K. Tyler, Brown, Bain, Miralles. Rebounds: Garcia 7. Assists: Cordero 3. Steals: Anglada 4.
▪ Region 4-4A final — Westminster Christian 60, Boca Raton St. Andrew's 57: Justin Brown scored 22 second half points for Westminster Christian as the Warriors knocked out host Boca Raton St. Andrew's (26-2) to advance to state for the first time in school history. Westminster will face Holy Trinity (Melbourne) in the Region 4-4A state semifinal on Wednesday at the Lakeland Center.
"We played a big game," Brown said. He finished with a game-high 33 points. "[Going to Lakeland] is the best feeling ever. We need to play every game hard and take it minute by minute."
Brown's biggest shots came at the foul line where he was 4-4 in the final minute of play. He hit two free throws with 17 second left to put the Warriors (22-8) up 60-57.
St. Andrew's was in control early in the game and led 27-16 in the second quarter. The Warriors ended the first half on a 11-3 run to only trail 34-31 at halftime.
Anthony Polite led the Scots with 24 points. He brought the capacity crowd to its feet on a go-ahead dunk in the fourth quarter with 1:37 to play. St. Andrew's led 57-54 at that point.
WC: Brown 33, Raine 10, Halfaker 9, Square 4, Paicely 2, Avery 2. SA: Polite 24, Ros 10, Pelissier 6, B. Haeffner 6, Ralat 5, McAdoo 2, A. Fishman 2, Milstein 2. Three-pointers: Polite 3, Pelissier 2, Raine 2, Ralat, Brown, Halfaker. Assists: Polite 6 . Rebounds: Ros 8 . Steals: Brown 3. Half: SA 34-31
▪ Region 3A Final — Westminster Academy 87, Community School of Naples 64: The Lions (23-6) came together as a unit to pull through a tough season and won the 3A regional final in Naples against the Seahawks.
Zach Scott led the Westminster boys basketball team with 23 points, 6 assists, two blocks with three steals to secure the teams position in the state final.
While Scott was the leading scorer he attributed the win to all of his team.
Jerald Butler put up 19 points, and Paul Atkinson added an additionally 18 and led the team in rebounds with 11.
The Lions defense prevailed despite the 17 points Justin Trunfio put up for the Seahawks (24-6).
"Our athleticism made the difference they have been working hard all year," Westminster Coach Ehren Wallhoff said. "Once we got going and we got pushed on the ball it was the difference in the game. All year it has been a combination of guys. This team has really bought into being one unit, one family."
The Lions will go on to face First Academy in the state final after a 69-61 win against Providence in the regional final.
COREY W. CAMPBELL
WA: Scott 23, Bulter 19, Atkinson 18, Johnston 18, Curlee 2 Santos 5, Ledbetter 2, Mahair 1, Mahoney 2, Christian 2, Dragovic 2. CSN: Donahue 3, Weiss 10, Lauber 2, Kastroll 3, Trunfio 17, P. Weiss 15, Friedman 2, Buttrick 8, Zuloaga 2, J.Seigel 2. Rebounds: Atkinson 11. Assists: Butler 7.
▪ Region 4-2A final — Boca Raton Grandview Prep 81, Miami Christian 67: Miami Christian may have been the defending 2A state champions but with only one returning player from last year’s squad, the Victors were a shell of that team and faced a daunting task when they traveled to Boca Raton to take on undefeated and nationally-ranked Grandview Prep in a Region 4-2A final on Saturday night.
And it showed as Grandview blew out to an early double digit lead and never looked back enroute to an 81-67 victory. After making a state record eight consecutive trips to the state final four from 2007-14, the Pride, 30-0 and ranked No. 19 nationally by Max Preps, will head back to the familiar surroundings of Lakeland and take on Orlando Christian Prep on Tuesday in a state semifinal.
“It took us a way too long to get into the flow of the game and playing catchup against a talented team like that was way too much to ask,” said first year Miami Christian coach Marcos Molina. “Tonight we were outmatched by a more experienced team and our inexperience showed. I think I got about as much out of these kids as I could’ve expected.”
Early turnovers and cold shooting turned out to be a bad combination as the Victors (18-8) found themselves down 22-9 after the first quarter.
The deficit grew as much as 20 late in the third quarter (52-32) before Miami Christian, led almost entirely by an amazing shooting performance by Eduardo Camacho carved away at the Grandview lead.
But despite Camacho’s seven three pointers in the second half, many from NBA range, the Victors could only whittle Grandview’s lead down to nine at 71-62 with a 1:20 to go. MC started fouling but the Pride, who went to the free throw line 43 times, made 9 of 10 down the stretch to close it out.
“I was off in the first half and it took me awhile to really find my shot,” said Camacho who finished with 31 points. “It was really frustrating because we just dug ourselves too much of a hole early.”
Senior Marc Syle was the only returning player from last year’s state title team and finished the night with seven points and half a dozen boards.
“This year was definitely a little strange but I was proud to be a part of this program,” said Syle. “Tonight was a rough night but this team will be back.”
Said Molina: “It took us a way too long to get into the flow of the game and playing catchup against a talented team like that was way too much to ask.”
MC: Camacho 31, Diaz 11, Syle 7, Rodriguez 5, Coqmard 4, Hamburger 4, Castillo 3, Martinez 2. GP: Occeus 22, Frazier 17, J. Schner 17, M. Schner 8, Snow 7, Nwahuchwa 6, Marcelin 4; 3 pointers: Camacho (7), J. Schner (3), Occeus (2), Castillo, Coqmard, Snow, M. Schner. HALF: GP 34-19.