York Catholic pulled away from Bethlehem Catholic in the final four minutes to earn a 60-54 victory Thursday, Dec. 29, 2016 at the 28th annual Robert H. Griffith Holiday Classic. Jim Seip, GameTimePA.com
Robbie McNamara hadn't hit a shot all game.
Locked in a back-and-forth struggle with Bethlehem Catholic, the York Catholic junior reserve ran down the floor in the fourth quarter and did not hesitate when he caught the ball on the wing. McNamara fired up a 3-pointer, and his only bucket of the game helped open the door for York Catholic to pull away in the final four minutes to earn a 60-54 victory in the Robert H. Griffith Holiday Classic at the York County School of Technology on Thursday.
"Bobby hit a 3, 'Dre (Davis) hit 3s, Torrey (Thomas) hit a 3 — when they hit 3s it makes my life a lot easier, to be honest," said York Catholic's Melik Martin, who won tournament MVP honors. "It opens up the court for me, because guys have to spread out. I get to work inside. It's just a beautiful game after that."
Martin dominated for stretches, despite being guarded by Bethlehem Catholic's 6-foot-9 junior Ryan Young.
Young owned a 4-inch height advantage above Martin, but Martin — a senior — had an advantage when it came to experience. And it showed. Playing in the high post to start the majority of York Catholic's offensive sets, Martin picked his spots when to drive and finished with a game-high 20 points.
After going to halftime tied, Bethlehem Catholic jumped out in the third quarter behind the outside shooting and mid-range shooting of its guards. Justin Paz hit a trio of 3-pointers in the third quarter, on his way to 16 points, while Amin Pettiford knocked down a third-quarter trey, on his way to 12 points.
"We didn't have to change anything," Martin said. "It was just intensity. They came out hot, and we had to retaliate."
One of the best sparks for the Irish proved to be be guard D'Andre Davis. He found his groove in the second half, scoring 13 of his 17 over the final two quarters.
"We had to get them back," said Davis, who earned all-tournament team honors. "From last year we lost by one (to Bethlehem Catholic), we were really sick after that game. This year, it means a lot to win this."
He knocked down eight points from the floor in the third, then he drained 5-of-6 free throws in the fourth to help seal the win.
"Coach wanted us to attack the basket and penetrate, but the shots were open," Davis said.
After seeing they had outside looks, York Catholic changed its strategy, Davis said. The coaching staff told the guards not to hesitate if they had open looks.
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