The Canisius varsity basketball team will settle for runner-up for the Monsignor Martin Manhattan Cup this year. The Crusaders suffered a tough loss in the Manhattan Cup Final to the Park School 62-54.
The game started with a dominating block delivered by Jayce Johnson '18. From there, Johnson and Nick MacDonald '18 hit some threes to push the Crusader lead forward to 10-5 with 3 minutes left. Then Park crept back to tie the game at 13-13 at the end of one.
The second quarter started with a tight defensive battle. Park led 17-16 midway through the quarter, but started to pull away. The Crusaders responded with some points of their own to cut the lead to 28-25 at the half.
Park came into the second half hot with a few threes and jumped to a 37-30 lead. Then Canisius bounced back with Johnson, Austin James '18, and Dwayne Vass '20 driving into the paint, drawing fouls, and nailing free throws. The quarter was capped off with a beautiful reverse layup by James to cut the Park lead to 42-38.
Park, once again, started the next quarter by grabbing rebounds and scoring points. Canisius responded with a few points of their own, but Park continued to score. Then Vass answered with a three and a crucial steal that led to a score to bring the Crusaders closer. Despite this series, Park didn't let up and jumped to a 54-46 lead with under three minutes remaining and eventually secured the victory at the free throw line. Johnson led the Crusaders' scoring with 17 points while James, MacDonald, Vass, and Ryan Bradley '18 each scored 14, 8, 8, and 7, respectively.
Despite the loss, Canisius had a great overall record of 22-2 and league record of 12-1 this season. Great season!