Boys Basketball: Sacred Heart Cathedral plays above the rim in win over Riordan

Sacred Heart Cathedral senior forward Joshua Fox (right) wards off a Riordan defender on Wednesday at Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep. (Photo by Eric Luis)

Sacred Heart Cathedral senior forward Joshua Fox (right) wards off a Riordan defender on Wednesday at Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep. (Photo by Eric Luis)

By Jeremy Balan

Sacred Heart Cathedral’s boys basketball team is not only continuing to rack up impressive victories – the Irish are starting to win with style.

The high-flying duo of senior forwards Joshua Fox and Taylor Johns combined for 41 points, most emphatically on six dunks, in a 63-49 West Catholic Athletic League win over visiting Riordan on Wednesday.

Sacred Heart Cathedral senior forward Taylor Johns slams home a dunk against Riordan on Wednesday at Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep. (Photo by Eric Luis)

While the above-the-rim display left the biggest impression, but it was the pair’s performance outside the paint that could give future WCAL opponents nightmares.

The duo knocked down several mid-range shots and combined to shoot 3-of-4 from 3-point range.

“These guys are different,” said Sacred Heart head coach Darrell Barbour. “They can make a basketball play on any part of the floor. It speaks to what kind of players they are. I don’t know why they announce Taylor as a center, because he’s more than that.”

Johns also had a game-high 11 total rebounds and two blocks, while Fox collected eight rebounds, but no player hit the offensive glass like 6-foot-1 guard Herman Pratt.

The Sacred Heart junior had six offensive rebounds and shot 7-of-11 from the floor to score 16 points.

“That’s the beauty of this team. We’re not a two-man team,” Barbour said. “They know Taylor and Josh are what people see and talk about, but they know their opportunities are going to come, and when they come, they take care of business.”

After a slow and sloppy start for both teams, Sacred Heart (15-1, 4-1) took a 11-8 lead late in the first quarter and did not relinquish the advantage.

The Irish extend their lead to 36-17 at the half, but Riordan (9-7, 2-4) outplayed Sacred Heart for most of the second half behind the sparkling play of junior point guard Geru Mabrey.

Mabrey scored 14 of his team-high 16 points in the second half and nearly cut the Sacred Heart lead to single digits early in the fourth quarter. After a layup from senior forward Iwunna Ugbaja to open the quarter, Mabrey had steals on Sacred Heart’s next two possessions and followed each with a fast-break layup.

But Pratt answered with six points of his own in the fourth quarter and the Crusaders never got within 10 points of the Irish.

“He needs to be more of a floor general, but he’s coming into his own,” Riordan head coach Rich Buckner said of Mabrey. “This is still his first year of playing varsity basketball and it’s the first year he’s being scouted. He’s at the top of teams’ scouting plans.”

Riordan junior point guard Geru Mabrey goes up for a layup against Sacred Heart Cathedral on Wednesday at Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep. (Photo by Eric Luis)

The difference ultimately came down the the frontcourt, however, as Fox and Johns simply overpowered the Riordan forwards.

“It’s like a broken record for us – defend the post,” Buckner said. “That’s the subtitle of our year. We’re pretty good on the perimeter, but we’re small inside. From here on out, in every single game in the WCAL, that’s going to be on the top of the board, to guard the post and box out.”

With the win, the Irish are still in a three-way tie for first place with Serra and Mitty, with a showdown on the road against the Monarchs looming Friday.

The Irish frontcourt will be tested by standout Mitty junior forward Aaron Gordon and the Monarchs took both regular-season meetings between the teams last season, but Barbour wants to take the focus off the individual matchups.

“I don’t want it to be Gordan against Taylor and Josh,” Barbour said. “We can’t make it like that. It’s about us going out and beating Mitty, not beating Gordon. Last year, we fell into that trap.”

Scoring Leaders

Sacred Heart Cathedral
Joshua Fox – 21
Taylor Johns – 20
Herman Pratt – 16
Tyler Petroni – 4
Khalil James – 2

Geru Mabrey – 16
D. J. Harvey – 12
Iwunna Ugbaja – 9
Daniel Selsor – 5
Anthony Castillo – 3

Here is another bonus video from our friend George Nguyen and Yay Area’s Finest

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118 Comments on "Boys Basketball: Sacred Heart Cathedral plays above the rim in win over Riordan"

  1. Wow, SHC looks impressive. Johns and Fox definitely already look ready for college ball.

  2. Irish looked good, albeit with too many turnovers. Barbour slowed the game down in the second half which disguised the mirage of a Riordan comeback.

  3. Riordan’s JV beat SHC’s JV by about 20 points. Taylor Johns and Joshua Fox are seniors.

    • Irishi Italian | January 19, 2012 at 11:31 AM |

      Don’t give much credence to jv’s projecting much on future of programs. Of SH’s top 8, I think only Tyler Petroni played Jv’s. The rest all played Varsity as Sophmores. The better indication of the future is the Freshman team where SH crushed Riordan by 28 and are undefeated on the year.

      • SHC has a top “8”? Didn’t look like that last night. Maybe a top 3. Four or 5 players never got off the bench. If there was not much “competition” by ARHS – why did only 7 SHC players of 11 o12 do all the playing – and in fact mostly just 5?

      • Once Johns and Fox graduate, where will the points and rebounding come from? Pratt and Khalil James will be their go-to guys.

        • SH left their guys in to give them more confidence for the big Mitty game on Friday. They need to be playing well if they are going to have a chance in that game.

        • After Taylor and Johns leave this year, they will still have James, Pratt, Otis,Jackson and O’Reilly and Banks who all get playing minutes now. They will be ok, but not as dominating. Interesting to see who will be moving up to Varsity next year from the Freshman class. Who knows their may be some transfers coming in too.

          • Unless there is a 6foot 7 inch guy playing freshman basketball, SHC won’t have the height to compete with the big boys next year. Most of their better players next year seem like all guards. But I know Barbour is a great coach, so he will make something happen.

            • No there isn’t, but they play very cohesively for a frosh group. (A couple of 6’7″ transfers wouldn’t hurt though).

              • How is he a great coach? With all that talent he has had he hasn’t won anything but a CCS d3 titles. Has he won state or even a WCAL title. If coach Buckner had those players riordan would add to our leauge leading WCAL tiles. Coach buck always gets the best out of what he has and thats the bottom line

            • As long as Barbour is there, kids are going to come and want to play for him. He runs an exciting style and develops team chemistry quickly. The guy just wins and a bonus, some of his kids go on to play college ball which doesnt hurt. Sure there are kids that transfer out, whether its for academic reasons or financial reason, but Coach Barbour is solid and has a Brian Harrigan-like legacy developing at SH. I hope he stays for a long long time.

              • Facts seem to not matter to these Riordan guys. Barbour has won a state title (2009), WCAL title (2009), and 3 CCS titles in four years! (not counting this year as they are favorites for CCS and Norcal finals) So what has Buckner won?

          • Well, then your remark is a compliment for ARHS to be compared to Mitty. So lets see, for the 5 (really more like 3: Fox, Johns and Pratt) SHC starters who did the most playing and points last night, the 10 Riordan varsity players helped SHC prepare them for Mitty, rather than allowing their second stringers have a go at some playing time and points for their Varsity careers. Must mean there was some concern that without those 3 they might have had a different game and outcome. Good luck with Mitty, hummmm…..

            • Johnny Drama | January 20, 2012 at 4:58 PM |

              If I recall correctly, he won the 2008 CCS Championship beating SHC’s team that went on to win the 2009 state title, by 30 points. That team had Brown, Greene, Cooper and Hubbard in the starting lineup. Barbour is a very good coach, his coaching will be put to the test next year.

          • Which ones of those “James, Pratt, Otis,Jackson and O’Reilly and Banks who all get playing minutes now” sat out the game last night? Most of them.

            • Bball fan a little bitter? Son didn’t play last night or just got embarrassed? James and Pratt start, Otis and O’Reilly are first off the bench, Jackson has a broken foot but wouldve challenged for a starting spot and Banks is starting to get more minutes. So they all played.

              • No need to degenerate to personal stabs. Pretty poor behavior – hope you don’t teach it to your SHC son. There were 4 players who sat on the SHC bench the whole game….

              • i am not angry. I am proud that the ARHS was so good that the SHC Varsity team only used 7 players last night and left 4 on the bench allowing, in your own words, the 10 Riordan players to give your 7 players a real exercise in playing basketball to prepare them for Mitty. I am proud that they are considered such good players as to require the competition of your 7/3 best players throughout the game. It was a good competition for your 7 players. So good that 4 reserve varsity players never got off the bench. ARHS beat the Bells by 16 points and the Bells gave SHC quite a game.
                BTW You sound proud too, but rude, with personal jabs and all and low….

          • Where would SHC be without its “transfers”.

            • True because SHC gets every transfer! I mean besides Gione Edwards, Antoine porter, Anthony Knight, DeEnd Parker, the Slocum brothers and countless others. But some people only believe in what they want to believe. Every school gets transfers, like Riordan and a former SH player who is a big part of their rotation. Forgot to mention that huh?

              • The same place Riordan’s State Championship team would have been without Kately and Tofi. Sorry that was too easy.

            • The same place Riordan’s State Championship would have been. Remember both Kately and Tofi transferred in prior to their junior years.

              Look sometimes in works (Kately,Tofi) and sometimes it doesnt (Camacho, Lowhorn, etc). Look kids (and their parents) make decision that fit them. It goes in circles. Whitehead at SI, SI freshman class of last year; SHC freshman class about 6 years ago. Remember before SHC got their new gyms, SI and Riordan were the breeding ground for attracting kids and for good reason. Since SHC has their new gym, that has changed. Now in a few years with Riordan’s updated Crusader Forum, that may change again.

              Bottom line (Right now): SHCP is playing and coaching as well as they could; SI is struggling to garner any chemistry (and/or make a jump shot); and Riordan coaching staff is squeezing all they can from their players.

            • I actually don’t have a son at SH or even an alumni but you stated which of those 6 players sat and said most of them, which I just showed you was false. Now you are ignoring what I pointed out to you and saying four players sat the whole game. I never said every player played so whats your point?

            • SH played 9 players. I guess getting the other team to play their best players most of the game is a win by your standards. I can’t believe SHC had to play their best players more than anyone else on the team! Thats just so confusing why a coach would play his best players a lot!! Someone please explain why Barbour would do such a weird thing!? Bellarmine played a great game and deserved that win against SH. Riordan also had a great game against the Bells they out played and out coached Bellarmine. But using that logic SHC beat San Ramon by 28 who beat Riordan by 1. SHC beat Si by 8 who beat Riordan by 13. SHC beat Serra by 11 who beat Riordan by 16. So what is it that youre trying to prove?

              • Yeah, when a team has to keep the same 3 players throughout the game – then yes for sure the opposing team is a threat – a competition – surprise?
                When Mitty plays Gordon for 29 of 32 minutes – well they feel a need to have him make points or else they might lose – and so when SHC feels a threat of losing (after Bellarmine was surprised to have happen to them by ARHS) – they play their 3 players for 29 of 32 minutes. That principle – you have not heard of before? The other 6 players played little of any time and little impact.

                How about you ask Barbour why he didn’t put in the bench more last night?
                If there isn’t a threat – then the second string goes in for a few minutes to get some playing time. Pretty simple. Pretty standard fare in all the years I have watched basketball – at all levels –
                You are kinda finess-ing your statements – you said that they all played. I was talking about last night but you changed it to mean their playing at all during the whole season, I guess. You got it – some game they may have played – but not all of them last night.
                So glad to hear that you don’t have a son/alumnus at SHC. Good for them. ahhh….

      • 9 out of 12 ARHS JV are sophomores.

        • When did I say Riordan wasn’t a threat? You think I am the other anon that said they were playing them to prepare for Mitty? I was responding to you stating: “Which ones of those “James, Pratt, Otis,Jackson and O’Reilly and Banks who all get playing minutes now” sat out the game last night? Most of them.” In which I showed you that they all played. Get your thoughts together please. I never said all SHC players played, I even said that 9 players from SHC played to correct your other post where you said they only played 7. I feel like the other anon angered you by saying Riordan wasn’t a threat but that wasn’t me. I believe all the teams in the WCAL are a threat to any team, esp a scrappy, great coached team like riordan. Other 6 players have no impact? Your definition of impact is scoring I guess because a game can be impacted by taking a charge or playing great team defense. The boxscore doesnt tell the whole story, each player on all teams have the ability to impact the game without putting the ball in the hoop. For you to say that the other players on the court had little to no impact on a game is insulting when it was evident that they obviously played great to get the win both on defense and offense. Those rebounds Johns and Fox get are there because all the other guys box out their man; those lay ups and dunks are there because of the execution of their offense and teammates making the right plays. Also thanks for that “bitter personal jab” ;)

        • Fox 21
          Johns 20
          Pratt 16
          Math: 57 of 63 points made by those three players/

          Leaving 6 pts

          Petroni 4
          James 2
          Total 63 pts for 5 players.

  4. SHC played only 7 players last night – Mostly played their starting 5.

    • SHC played 9 players against Riordan. Fox, Johns, & Pratt played about 29 minutes each of the 32 minute game.

      Mitty played 13 players against Riordan , last week, and did not play Aaron Gordon.

      It appears the Mitty Bench Players are going to be better than the SHC Bench Players.

  5. If you don’t have the height – it’s hard to stop Fox and Johns. Good effort Crusaders – Geru had some good shots last night. Good luck SHC against Mitty. That should be a good game.

  6. Thanks Eric Luis for the great pics , as we are well aware they are worth a thousand words , much appreciated sir . To George Nguyen and Yay Area you certainly are the Bay’s finest , your contributions are what I look for on a daily basis , this enables me to have a courtside seat and feel the action . Hats off to you and the crew , as a suggestion … a top 5 / 10 plays of the week compilation , I leave that parting thought with you .

    On another note , job well done SH , good luck on Fri and you know the force will be with you . You win as a team , so play as a team . United you stand , divided you fall , there is always power in numbers , so go forth into battle young warriors victory awaits a claimant .

    JB once again , thanks for this forum . You have no idea what impact and insight it brings forth , now our athletes are being recognised and have an opportunity to be on a scout radar . Ever so grateful , Thanks .

  7. Now I know why SI beat Riordan fairly easily, Geru Mabrey had 0 points that game.

  8. The guys you mentioned are all incoming freshman, none was a transfer…Thank you, you sound angry? Basketball Fan

  9. Although I like Riordan better than SI, I do still have a grudge with Riordan. I’ll cite a couple of incidents.

    When SH football was out of the WCAL and pretty much was the whipping boy for Riordan & SI, I was in the press box at Kezar getting player names/pronunciations for the PA announcer. I knocked politely on the Riordan coaches press box and asked what some players names were and the guy’s response was “Find out yourself! Its not my job to know that!” Okayyyyyyyyyy…

    And when that game was over, I cant remember the score but Im sure Riordan really kicked SH’s tail that game because Riordan football great Enrique Lara dragged like 7 SH defenders with him everytime he ran the ball, the coaches came out of the pressbox and told us, the announcer, small little Sr. Francis and us “WELCOME TO THE WCAL!!!!” Okayyyyyyyyyyy. So this guy is supposed to be an example of Catholic values?

    Lastly my issue was with Pat… So I was PA announcer for SH varsity bball games for a few seasons. I MISTAKENLY referred to Archbishop Riordan as Archbishop Mitty. Honest mistake. Pat is usually seated next to the PA, he shook his head, made a smug sound… I never forgot that. People are who they are, and they make those choices to belittle people or want to feel superior. But overall people make mistakes and are just living their life. So Pat if youre reading this I forgive you. Nothing to cry about. It was a slip of the tongue.

    Ok that was my Dr. Phil moment… Now back to being Ari Gold!!!!! Welcome to the WCAL now Riordan!!!!

    • Kezar for Keeps | January 19, 2012 at 3:32 PM |

      I cannot believe what I’m reading. You, the same Ari Gold that has slammed Stephen Domingo and Johnny Mrlik so many times that I’ve lost count, are complaining about people who “belittle” and “want to feel superior”? That is the most hypocritical thing I have ever read. Maybe you should take some of your own advice.

      • @Kezar, How dare you!?! I am Mrlik’s 2nd biggest fan!!! When I comment on Mrlik its not your traditional “Hey Johnny! Great game!!! Oh he plays with 110% effort and does everything to help his team win”, its “I really dislike this guy, he shoots too much, he never passes, blah blah blah”…. Dont you know from a sport/athletic standpoint that one of the highest forms of praise is to boo or get boo’d? Because I know how damn good of a player Mrlik was at SI. I wish he was on SH!!! He’s tough, gritty, and somehow all those shots he chucked up went in and he won alot of games for SI. I couldnt stand him because he was that good. … Im spent on SD31. I guess if I were to say something nice I can say he’s at least playing through injuries which I suppose displays some toughness. But really other than that, hes shown me and alot of people skills that are nothing to sneeze at.

      • I’m glad you picked up on that Kezar for Keeps! Ari Gold is a hypocrite and I’ve told him about that in a previous post this week. This is the second time this week he’s been called out on being a hypocrite!

    • Ari Gold,
      Tell Anonymous about people who like to belittle … he has a real sour spot in his gut or somwhere else and likes to act big online by personal jabs –

      And if you want to deal with personal past events – why chose this forum? Do it in person to the person you are unhappy with. We don’t all need to be involved.

      where is the moderator – I thought there is a statement : “Personal attacks will also not be permitted”.

      Lets stick to the games and not degenerate into angry bitter personal jabs.

      • SHC will have a tough time with Mitty. As good as SHC is playing Mitty has just as much, if not more depth than the Irish. Sounds like Gordon will be healthy and available the whole game. As for Mitty’s loss at Serra-Serra is an extremely hard place to win. The crowd noise, Rapp’s intimidation of the officials (he’s on the court the whole game). The cheering section-second to none. A very tough place to play.

        As good as SHCP is this year, they will have to do it all themselves: their crowd is extremely quiet, student section unorganized and it is quite franklely the least intimidating arena to play in in the WCAL.

        Monarchs by 8.

    • Personally, I really enjoyed reading those stories, do you have any for why you don’t like SI, or is it just because you went to SH?

      • In contrast to what people think, I don’t hate SI….. I hate the AAA….kidding….. I just have a higher appreciation for better talent and coaching. Of course anyone can debate that. Its like say being a Pac-12 fan vs the Mountain West or West Coast Conference.

        Regarding SI, my dislike for them is purely from an athletic rivalry standpoint. Compare to Yankees-RedSox, Giants-Dodgers, Cal-Stanford… thats all it is…You root for your team and root harder against the rival and appreciate the other team’s stellar player with a round of boo’s because thats how you sometimes show respect. Derek Jeter loves it when he gets boo’d because that means he did something right and that his team is winning.

        • Wow, who would’ve thought that you could actually humble yourself. I guess being called out on being a hypocrite TWICE by two different people in the same week got you to open your eyes. I’m very proud of you Ari Gold. You deserve a gold star for doing such a good job with this comment.

    • I am usually paying attention to the game or the team’s head coach or his assistants, not the announcer.

      I know most of the announcers from the other League Schools and if they have been doing it for few years, I have always made sure they had Riordan Rosters before the game.

      After you announce Archbishop Riordan as Archbishop Mitty, what do you expect me to say. “We are Riordan, #####”. After you announce Archbishop Riordan as Archbishop Mitty, there is nothing for me to say. I was probably not saying anything because it would not be polite anything I did say to you after you called Archbishop Riordan Archbishop Mitty

      The school colors are very distinctive, with Riordan having Purple and Gold uniforms and Mitty having Black with a little Notre Dame Gold on their uniforms.

      Only you as an announcer can correct the mistake.

      For Football Games, you never ask assistant coaches how to pronounce the player’s names. Almost all announcers go down to the field and ask the Head Coach of the team how pronounce the player’s names.

      If there are coaches in the Press Box, then there is a game being played and you are asking for the pronunciations during a game, during which the coach is trying to coach.

      • Not looking for any pity from you Pat. You are who you are. I corrected my mistake right away after hearing your sound effects.

        Funny dont ever recall you ever saying a word to me much less saying hello. Same type of bitter hatred towards SH like the rest of them. But Im sure if it was a female inquiring info you would be so nice and cordial. Just type, click and print your socks off Pat like you always do.

        FYI why the hell would I go into the a coaches press box DURING a game? And I was asked by legendary announcer Joe Hallisey to see if the coaches in the press box, which was DURING WARMUPS, to see if they can POSSIBLY help out with names. And if that didnt work out, go down to the field as normal. And I NEVER got crap like I did from any other school’s coaches regarding names. If they didnt know, they said, they werent sure, no BS crap like “ITS NOT MY JOB TO KNOW!” …

  10. Ari..first of all, despite not being competitive since 2007-2008 when Riordan won CCS in football and basketball, Riordan hasn’t left the WCAL as your school did, so no need to welcome them back. Second, please don’t get me started on Catholic values. I will not mention any names but do you recall why certain members of your great 2009 recruiting class left? Let’s just say LACK of catholic values. Maybe that’s what they teach at SHC? And my last point, every school goes through peaks and valleys. Your school is at it’s peak now so enjoy it while it lasts but remember how LONG the valley was so I wouldn’t get too cocky. Remember, Riordan has more championships than SHC boys basketball and football.

    • What happened or supposedly happened in 2009 at SHC? Educate the ones who do not know, I never heard anything? What was the problem?

      • I believe one was involved in robbery down the peninsula. Not sure if convicted, but was dismissed accordingly from school. Didnt seem to affect team on court as they won State Championship next year. I’m sure you can go down a rap sheet on many of the WCAL City teams. Its not called the Unholy Trinity for nothing. I (and Im sure you) can think of high profile grads of all three schools brought before the judicial system.

        • And by the way anony (please give yourself a name), I do agree with you-most of these pro SHC people are cocky and if they look at the long history of the WCAL they would know that Riordan and SI have so many more WCAL boys championships. So yes, they are successful in recent years, but they should be humble.

          • Pro-SHC people are not “cocky”. It’s people who project their hate with their constant ripping of the new gym, the quiet crowd, the football team temporarily leaving the league in order to re-build the program (BTW, 22 YEARS ago) that gives SHC fans satisfaction when they beat the other City schools and Serra after getting literally laughed at for years.

            • We all see what you say on Norcalpreps Irish_Cheeres, especially about Riordan. You are all hate! Hypocrite.

        • Yes, Im sure all the catholic schools in SF have their share of bad seeds and questionable integrity while off campus. However, I just don’t understand why people mention the 2009 class of SHC. Even with all the people that transferred out to Mission or got kicked out of the school, the school retained enough athletes with enough talent to win games and championships.

          • That was an entry class that SHC alums even winced at. It stood out because SHC to that time had never attracted the big athlete and all of a sudden they got a class that rivaled the Michigan Fab Four.

            Now they dont get classes like that anymore but most young basketball kids who have an opportunity to attend SHC go there due to the success of the program the past few years. They may not have the high profile kid like Domingo, but enough kids to maintain the competitive edge.

            Maybe I am getting old, but the young kids dont even remember or appreciate the Riordan State Championship team and the power house teams of both SI and Riordan of the 70’s, 80’s and do I dare say 90’s. That’s old fart school to them.

            • The amount of talent in that 2009 class at SHC was simply amazing. And like WCAL Alum said, that class brought all this talent to the school, and was the real jump off point to all the success that the SHC basketball program is now experiencing.

            • @WCAL ALUM i’m an old fart. si grad from the seventies. You might want to check out a site called PrepFeed. It also gives links to SFPreps.It has great coverage of CCS sports, including a history of the CCS playoffs year by year. I was fortunate enough as a kid to watch Kevin Restani and Riordan beat SH(it was SH back then) at USF for the WCAL championship. SH (Glenn Hubbard(SCU schollie),Ken Cooper, Terry Richardson) won the CCS in ’72, Riordan (John Pachetti, Jim Ryan(walk-on at SCU) Elmer Love, Greg Bond, Alton Byrd)won CCS championships in ’73 and ’74 and SI ’75 and ’76 (Bowie, Mitchell,Passanissi, Buick and O’niell, McEvoy etc.) lost in the CCS championship 2 years in a row to a Cupertino team led by a guy named Kurt Rambis. I realize i’m boring most people on this site, who don’t know what the heck i’m rambling about.,but check out PrepFeed you’ll enjoy it’s information. I better go change my diapers.

            • It may be “Old Fart School” but “Old Fart School” is the best. Sports are not the same anymore (to some degree). If the kids these days just took a look at what those have done before them, they would have more appreciation for the game and for their school (at least in my opinion anyway). It’s hard to develop school pride if you lack the knowledge of the school you attend.

              • It’s good to know that history and we can’t wait until the Kevin Restani Arena is built at Riordan.

              • merkinworld | January 20, 2012 at 1:27 PM |

                ya, back in the old days there was no espn,, club teams(only teen club) etc. Things were simple, my biggest decision was which bus to take to kezar. I rooted for the wildcats first, however if SH or Riordan advanced farther in the playoffs, I would root for my fellow SF schools, not rip them. Good luck to all schools both AAA and WCAL and all the players and fans. Everyone should take a deep breath and enjoy the the games, and this site which allows us to vent.

              • Merkinworld. Good stuff; I will look up soon. Lived through that era too, so I feel I have a good perspective of all members of the Unholy Trinity and how the lineage places out with today’s generation. Wont say which generation is better (its apples to oranges), but the sheer excitement of those games cannot be matched on a regular basis. It seemed like every City WCAL game had a Bruce-Mahoney feel to it, back then. Less distraction back then (and thank God, no internet).

                Cant blame them for lack of knowledge-thank God they have us to put their rants in perspective. Better to get your issues out in the internet (as opposed to actual fist fights in the Kezar Pavillion parking lots with the haze of marijuana, cigarettes and empty Budweiser bottles).

              • merkinworld | January 20, 2012 at 2:28 PM |

                i was coors guy

        • merkinworld | January 20, 2012 at 7:34 AM |

          Luke Whitehead.

      • Johnny Drama | January 20, 2012 at 6:07 AM |

        One got arrested for armed robbery, one got arrested for auto theft and a couple stole laptops from school/students. All these kids were part of the 2009 Senior class…that’s why it was brought up. This was the beginning of very good hoop teams for SHC BUT was also the beginning of a transformation many alumni cringe at. That class made more headlines off the court than on it.

    • Amen to that. Riordan needs no Welcome – we been here for years.

    • Anon: You have to take what Ari Gold says with a grain of salt. I’ll leave it at that. Most of his comments are made just so he can hear himself speak.

  11. I am so glad the Iwunna Ugbaja is playing well, that kids had a tough go of it at Riordan. I think two major knee surgeries, the kids a warrior. He’s also one of the best people around, I’d like to give serious props to him. His little brother, sophomore Jiday is a fantastic young player, who although has not played a lot of minutes in games that I’ve seen has a bright future in the problem. Fox and Johns seem legitimate, I haven’t seen them play this year, but the stats are impressive. It will be interesting to see where they end up.

  12. City Lights | January 19, 2012 at 6:47 PM |

    Never fear! St. Mary’s AAU and the Rebels will replenish the SHC roster once the twin towers are gone. The next 6’6″ transfer and/or incoming frosh is just around the corner. The pipeline of talent is in place for good. People are just going to have to deal with it.

    From Kevin Greene & Jerry Brown to Taylor Johns & Josh Fox to another title. Book it!

    By the way, I love the game of Johns and Fox, but that being said I think they’ll end up great high school players that brought the trophy to SHC and possibly a State title, but their game doesn’t really transfer well to high D1 or mid-majors. They’re just a little too small to play as bigs at the next level. They would get mashed by the guys in the 6’7″ to 6’10” range they would have to cover. Maybe if they work hard on their handles and jumpshooting, go to CCSF, greyshirt, and then possibly redshirt at a bigger school they could make it work. I wish them the best as they seem like genuinely good kids though.

    The Ugbajas at Riordan are also fantastic kids. I hope they find more success this year and the CCS doesn’t punish them for the dumb-diddly-dumb-dumb actions of the new AD.

    • Sounds good to me.

      • I think they would be fine at Loyola, St. Marys, University of Santa Clara, Pepperdine, USF, etc.

        • While I think they could maybe play at those places, something needs to be understood, the WCC is very different in talent. St. Mary’s and Gonzaga are far and away different than Pepperdine and USF. Although I know this has nothing to do with this article, I felt that it would be important to point out. I’m not saying they couldn’t play at any of those schools, they may very well be St. Mary’s material but that is much different than USF material.

      • @city lights, I agree with what you have to say about SHC reloading with good youth players and Fox and Johns having good high school careers but can they handle the next level up in a D1 college? Only time will tell but as I know these 2 great kids they will work their butts off to prove to people they can play with anyone. They have good basketball IQ which is a coaches delight, just ask coach Barbour. As far as the Ugabajas (spelling) kids-they are very good and respectful young men. Jiday is a sophomore and going through a tough time playing varsity ball and Uno works so hard and wants to help his team in anyway possible. Good luck to the city schools and I pull for any kid who has a shot at a free college education.

  13. When Pratt was in middle school, he was already a beast. If he played with Seth Snoddy from Lincoln and Antoine Porter from Mission, that would be another big 3 right there because they all came from the same middle schools, and they were both very good.

  14. Just a note – why does it matter how many bench players play ? I am more interested in the ” W ” , isn’t it all about this season ? deal with the next bridge when you get to it . Wether X ,Y or Z , played 150 mins each I couldn’t care less , but if they lost then ” Houstan we have a problem ” , it’s all about the wins , by hook or by crook . SH coaches must be doing something right , record speaks for itself , can any of us do any better ? if we can’t , I suggest we put up . It is kinda hard to credit a program when they are doing good when we have this bitter taste about us . I am a BIG WCAL fan and will support all our schools and when excels I will get behind you wether it be CCS or State , we are just proud

    • merkinworld | January 20, 2012 at 7:29 AM |

      agree. well said.

    • It’s amazed me for years how some people (they know who they are) have it in for Sacred Heart. It’s a great program, the best gymnasium in the City and the most cordial people and students. Success speaks for itself.

  15. MITTY OR SHC ?
    wonder who will win ?

    • Feel The Pain | January 20, 2012 at 8:30 AM |

      Mitty is more than Aaron Gordon, just like Sacred Heart is more than Fox and Johns. Mitty won their 3 meetings against SH 2 yrs. ago in Gordon’s freshman season and swept both games last year by double digits. Mitty is 5-0 against SH in the Gordon era but this is Sacred Heart’s best opportunity to take down the Monarchs. It has to happen this year as Gordon will dominate next year in his senior campaign. Irish are more hungry and they are on a mission. The Irish will win in a tight contest.

    • I think if Johns can have a complete game and Fox plays tough as usual then they have a GOOD chance to win it. It should be a good game to watch.

      • The SHC vs. Mitty Game is going to be won by the guards and small forwards of either school with the help of the Bench Players.

        Gordon and Vranicar should be able to play good defense on Fox and Johns, and also score as many points as they do or more points.

        SHC’s one advantage might be they have better starting guards.

        Mitty starts three tall forwards, who are all at least 6’5″ tall, when Gordon starts.

        Mitty has a better bench, since one of those players started all the games, Gordon did not play or start in the games.

    • SHC of course. Now you can stop wondering. Go Irish!!!

  16. Went to A.P Giannini Middle School with Herman, Antoine, and Seth. Even though Im a year older than em, they were really great athletes back in the day. Im pretty sure they all played Baseball and Track too. APG basketball has really placed alot of good players in the city, Ivan Dorsey class of 06 plays at ccsf, some played at lowell, lincoln, wallenberg, washington. Glad to see APG alumni doing work

  17. IRISH Indeed ! ! Many will be surprised , but not I . . They aren’t the ” fighting Irish ” for no reason .

  18. Good Luck SH , go on lads and do the City proud , dig deep young men , you got this .

  19. All the SHC fans crowing about the win over Riordan when their bigs were defended by players 6 inches shorter. See how they do against guys their size. Mitty by 18 at least.

    • SHC fans were just happy they got a win over a rival. I don’t think anyone said anything about Riordan guys being small or anyone meaning to discredit Riordan, at least not me. SHC beat top ranked teams such as Jesuit and McClymonds and they all had guys taller than Johns and Fox. Mcclymonds Center is 6’9 with some of their guards listed as 6’6! SHC is very good this year period, hopefully they can beat Mitty.

    • As you can see in the pic above with Fox. Not even close in size. Fox is taller, bigger and stronger. So of course you will win that battle. SCH hasn’t won the war though. Keep fighting Crusaders.

  20. SI fans/alumni, and the AAA….great news!!!! Im concentrating on Riordan now.

    I’ll start off by saying that I can only name one person in Riordan history that I absolutely admire and thats the late great Nick Stanfel. When he substituted at SH, it was a class period that was absolutely enjoyable. A delightful man and big heart. … I’ll add the Riordan band is second to none.

    Make sure when Kevin Restani Forum opens to include the huge panorama of him getting dunked on by Darryl Dawkins. I know some friends that went to Riordan that pissed him off when they yelled out CHOCOLATE THUNDER!!! Big scowl on his face.

    • Ari, your posts about Stanfel and SHC and the “fighting Irish” bring back a memory of a Riordan/SHC football game in 2004 or 2005 maybe. SHC won the game and they tried to storm the Riordan side of the field after a signal from their sidelines. All we could see were the SH players getting pummeled and thrown to the ground while others went into retreat mode and hid behind the sh coaches. Everybody in the stands was wondering what did they just witness. Reminded me of a scene in Braveheart. Still one of the funniest high school football moments ever.

      • I find it sad that you find that funny.

      • I think I remember this game that you are talking about. I think Rob Jones of Riordan was playing tight end for Riordan at the time. It was pretty disrespecfful on SHC’s part because they won the trophy between SHC and Riordan, and a player from SHC just ran to the Riordan sidelines, grabbed the trophy and hoisted it up in the air. It was very disrespectful, and the Riordan players let SHC know it.

        • All this banter is really stupid. I am positive every school had stupid classless moments on all sides. These are kids and they are suppose to be supervised and they are suppose to win with dignity and class. Does it always happen? Heck no, when we were all boys, SI Riordan SH hated each other even more. I remember when we use to have Tri-school mass at Grace Cathedral, can anyone remember that? Needless to say, I don’t recall anyone actually praying or feeling holy with everyone under one roof. But let us all agree, these three schools generally represent the best of San Francisco, not every year, but overall, they do a good job educating and teaching values academically and athletically.

          • Irish won that game for the first time in a long time. I think they just let their enthusiasm get the best of them but Riordan had no business starting fights out there.

            Also, the Tri-School Mass was at St. Mary’s Cathedral.

            • SHC had no business running behind the Riordan bench to grab the Stanfel trophy, without even doing the customary handshake. Very rude.

            • Johnny Drama | January 20, 2012 at 5:45 PM |

              I love the way IC spins everything in SHC’s favor. So if someone breaks into your home to take something that they just claimed as theirs, you would sit back and let it happen…….good to know. Maybe that is the prevalent mentality at SHC which explains the “pummeling”.

              You sure some of those former 2009 kids didn’t try to steal the trophy?

              • Though not possible because football is the 1st leg of the BM, if it was awarded after the football game, I want to see ONE player try to lift the BM. Dont care if it breaks cuz its been dropped and broken before. Just want to see someone attempt this physical feat.

              • I think Mr. Drama was talking about the Stanfel Cup, not the Bruce Mahoney. That was a low blow about the stealing. What does it matter, none of the thugs that went to SHC graduated that year, so SHC was left with the cream of that class who overall did well.

          • merkinworld | January 20, 2012 at 6:19 PM |

            yes. i was there all 4 years at the tri-city mass. there was more class and respect and fistfights back then.

  21. It wasn’t a violent exchange of blows and nobody got hurt JB. Maybe stupidest or classless would have been a better description but I didn’t want to be name calling, you know what I mean?

  22. Let’s see. All of the players were wearing pads and most still had helmets on as I recall. They had just engaged in a hard hitting football game. The handful of players getting thrown to the grass or punched on the helmet was less physical than the preceding 60 minutes of play. Nobody was hurt and it didn’t get violent. Nobody was trying to injure or kill anybody. Maybe the SHC players and coaches feelings were hurt but that is about all.

    • You have a different definition of violent than I do.

      • Some people forgot that Riordan did the exact samething a few years earlier when they won the game and stormed SHC sidelines. SHC didn’t attack them. Yeah I’m sure they were pissed but they showed class..Riordan’s Head coach was Frank Orris the same head coach when SHC ran to there sidelines I blame the coach.He was pissed he lost. For a few years SHC was Riordan’s whipping boy and times have changed. Everything comes full circle.

  23. Johnny Drama | January 20, 2012 at 6:41 PM |

    Ari my brotha…..I think SHC can pull it out tonight……….as much as it pains me to say…they have a shot!

    • The homer in me says sure, but Ive seen this movie before. Aaron Gordon = Senque Carey…. Taylor Johns = Ceasar Smith… Get the picture?

  24. SHC lost to Mitty by 3 tonight, 62 to 59. SHC had a last second 3 pt shot missed by Fox. Great game kids.

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