Crusaders Roundup 3/9/20

By Steven Czarnecki '21

Highlights of the Crusaders sports teams from the last week.



The Crusaders started their week with a huge 63-54 Manhattan Cup finals victory over St. Joe’s. The game started with four consecutive points from Dewayne Vass ‘20. The Marauders eventually tied the game, but Canisius started to pull away at the end of the first quarter with a five point lead. From there, the squad heated up. Balanced scoring gave the Crusaders an edge, and they went on to extend the lead to eleven with a Joe Ciocca ‘21 three pointer. The half ended with a 31-23 score, the momentum favoring Canisius.

The Crusader offense came out of the locker room firing. Vass used his ball handling and finishing skills to facilitate the offense and score eight points in the quarter. The ball movement was phenomenal, Ciocca perfecting a lob pass to Vass over multiple defenders for a score and a foul. Vass also hit a tightly contested trey with the shot clock at zero. Canisius’ offense sparked, but they weren’t alone. The Marauders continued to hang around, recording some baskets of their own. After an exciting quarter, the Crusaders possessed a ten-point lead, looking to finish the game in the final period.

In the fourth quarter, the Crusaders looked just as sharp as they started. Vass continued to shake off multiple defenders and set up open shots for his teammates. The Marauders attempted a comeback, but a relentless Crusader defense maintained the multiple score lead. Canisius prevailed, winning their 20th straight matchup against St. Joe’s and the Manhattan Cup along with it.

Vass led the team with twenty points while Max Dowling ‘21 scored sixteen and Shane Cercone ‘23 contributed eleven. Once again, Cercone had a dominant performance defensively and on the glass.

After the game, Vass was named Manhattan Cup MVP and All-Catholic Player of the Year. Additionally, Ciocca and Dowling earned spots on the All-Catholic team.

In the Crusaders’ following matchup in the NYS Catholic semifinals at Hofstra University, they defeated St. Anthony’s 55-40. Ciocca led the squad with 21 points while Vass wasn’t far behind with sixteen.

After the win in Long Island, Canisius would have played in the CHSAA Class A state championship game against Fordham Prep. The CHSAA cancelled all remaining postseason basketball games though due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Christian Heitzhaus ‘20 finished his phenomenal season with a 16th place finish at the NYS Catholic tournament. Congrats!

Indoor Track

Lucas Beyer ‘20 finished in third place in the 1600-meter race at the NYS Federation Championships to finish an excellent Canisius career. Congrats!

Go Crusaders!