WILMINGTON — St. Elizabeth got off to a white-hot start against Overbrook (Pa.) on Dec. 17 at the Winter Showcase at Howard High School. The Vikings blistered the net for 25 points in the first quarter and did not allow the Panthers to threaten them in a 60-45 victory.
The Vikings’ first possession sent a mixed message, as the team had three chances to open the scoring, but all three shots missed. The Panthers took their only lead at 2-1 on a shot by Michael James, and St. Elizabeth called an early timeout when they could not solve the full-court pressure that followed.
Out of the timeout, the Vikings broke the press easily, and Julius Wright scored on a layup to put St. Elizabeth up, 3-2. Overbrook, hust by turnovers, managed to hzng close for a few minute, closing to within three at 9-6 on a field goal by Ethan Kimble. After that, however, St. E’s was off to the races.
Jayden Lawrence answered Kimble with a short jumper, sparking a 15-0 Vikings run. Shaun Chandler had two buckets during the stretch, both in transition. Aiden Tobiason was a factor all afternoon, and he scored the final points of the streak with a baseline layup. That pushed the lead to 24-6; it was 25-10 when the quarter ended.
The first-half lead grew to 16 points when Lawrence forced a Panthes turnover, ran the floor and dished to his brother, Justin, for a layup. Justin Lawrence also scored coast-to-coast to end the half, with St. Elizabeth leading by 16.
Kimble, the son of Overbrook head coach and former professional player Bo Kimble, had a personal 5-0 run early in the third quarter on an old-fashioned three-point play, a steal and a layup to get his team within 11, but the Vikings got the offense in gear once again. Tobiason brought the crowd to its feet late in the quarter, beating a defender along the baseline for a big dunk, extending the lead to 20 points for the first time.
Overbrook went on an 11-0 run late in the fourth quarter after most of the Vikings starters had left the game to shrink the final margin. The last field goal of the afternoon, though, belonged to a Viking, freshman Jaire Stewart, who scored his first points of the season.
Tobiason, Justin Lawrence and Wright each scored 12 points in the win, and Chandler added 11. Jayden Lawrence had nine. The Vikings improved to 2-1 and host First State Military on Monday at 7:15 p.m. at the St. E Center.
James paced the Panthers with 17, and Kimble joined him in double figures with 11.
All photos by Mike Lang.