CLAYMONT — St. Elizabeth and Archmere played a topsy-turvy first half, but the second half belonged to the Vikings as they pulled away for a 59-38 victory Jan. 20 at Moglia Fieldhouse.
St. Elizabeth held a 25-22 halftime lead after two quarters that featured nine lead changes and four ties. Julius Wright opened the second half with a three-pointer for the Vikings, doubling the lead to six, which at that point was their biggest of the game.
The Auks’ got to within four points on two occasions in the third quarter, the first on a corner three from Alex MacWilliams, and the second on a mid-range jumper by Chris Albero. His shot made the score 33-29, but the Vikings responded the way they very often did in the second half: by taking the ball directly to the basket.
Caden Harris responded to Albero’s jumper by driving the other way and drawing a foul while hitting off the glass. He completed a three-point play to get the lead back to seven.
Wright ended the third the same way he began it, with a three-point shot to extend the lead to 10, which is where it stood heading ingo the fourth.
The Vikings maintained a lead in the nine- to 11-point range for several minutes into the fourth, although it reached 13 when Aiden Tobiason laid in a shot to complete a fast break with about seven minutes remaining, Archmere responded, with P.J. Blessington and Matt McCarthy going back-to-back to push the difference back to single digits. Unfortunately for the Auks and the nice crowd that came out to support them, those were the team’s final field goals until the closing seconds.
Shaun Chandler hit four free throws before Jayden Lawrence, Justin Lawrence and Steven Nixon each scored in the paint during a 10-1 run.
Chandler scored 12 to lead St. Elizabeth, with Jayden Lawrence (11) and Justin Lawrence (10) also in double figures. The Vikings (8-5) return home on Tuesday to host Delaware Military Academy at 7:15 p.m.
Albero scored the Auks’ first 11 points on his way to a game-leading 19. Archmere (5-4) plays the first of five straight away from home on Monday at 7:15 p.m. at Saint Mark’s.
All photos by Mike Lang.