Chaminade wins close one against Morningside, advances to semifinals

After two consecutive easy outings for the Eagles in the 4AA CIF playoffs, Coach Wolfson and his players were given all they could handle Tuesday night against the Morningside Monarchs before coming away with a 77-66 victory.

After a rough first quarter, Michael Oguine dominated the second half, making 10 of 11 free throws, and finishing with a game high 28 points.

The game definitely had a playoff atmosphere, as the Monarchs brought a large amount of supporters all the way from Inglewood.  The Cage was also in full effect, and the two were going back and forth the whole game.  

With Morningside having nine players listed at 6-2 and above, Coach Wolfson decided to start two big men for the first time this season with Jake Porath and Joel Loth in order to match the size of the Monarchs.  However, the Eagles still had problems rebounding, especially on the defensive end.  

Porath continued his excellent play, as he started off the game with a three pointer from the top of the key, followed by a block on the other end.  The Monarchs did not score until five minutes into the first.  The Eagles had their own struggles on offense to start the game, until Nick Henzgen came in and made back-to-back three pointers.  Ogundiran closed the quarter with a steal and a layup, as Chaminade led 17-7.

Ogundiran did the same thing to start off the second.  Then, the game became a battle of and-ones.  The two teams combined for five baskets plus the foul in a matter of five minutes.  Henzgen, Michael Wilson, and Oguine all hit threes in the last four and half minutes of the quarter, to put the Eagles up 37-31 at half.  

The second half started just like the first as the Eagles failed to score in the first two minutes, until Oguine made a layup followed by an Aidan Dolan three.  The rest of the game belonged to the dynamic duo that has brought the Eagles this far.  Oguine and Ogundiran dominated the second half, getting to the line and putting heavy pressure on the Monarch’s ball-handlers.  The Monarchs got the game within four points with a minute left, but a Wilson offensive rebound followed by an Oguine layup sealed the win.

Oguine may have led the team in scoring, but the MVP of this game could also go to Ogundiran.  Ogundiran put up 2010 Rajon Rondo like numbers with 14 points, six rebounds, six assists, and a whopping seven steals (third most in school history).  Henzgen and Dolan combined for five three pointers.  Porath added in 11 points and five rebounds, and the freshman Wilson scored seven points. 

With Notre Dame losing a heart breaker to Oaks Christian, two Mission League teams are left in the 4AA playoffs, Chaminade and Crespi.  Crespi plays Oaks Christian, and Chaminade will play the two-seed Mission Prep on Friday.  

-Matt Patterson