Trinity thwarts St. Al in MPSA-MHSAA game

Published 12:00 am Sunday, January 11, 2009

If you have a good team, it doesn’t matter what association you play in.

Trinity Episcopal showed that at St. Aloysius Saturday afternoon by beating the host Flashes 72-60.

The Saints, who play at the AA level in the Mississippi Private School Association, wore down St. Al with their pressure and depth. The game marked the first time either Trinity or St. Al, which plays in the Mississippi High School Activities Association, had played a school from the state’s other association.

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It won’t be the last. Trinity will play St. Al’s Catholic rival Cathedral on Martin Luther King Day. St. Aloysius will play Vicksburg’s other private school, Porters Chapel Academy, on Jan. 24 in the Red Carpet Classic at Vicksburg High.

Trinity coach David King, who led the Saints to a pair of Academy-A titles in football, said the hour-plus drive up the river proved beneficial.

“I’ve been trying to fill out our schedule with more teams and I was glad that St. Al invited us to come and play. This was a good experience. The boys competed hard. I’ve already talked with Coach (Jim) Taylor about doing something next season,” King said.

Second year St. Al coach Gary Miller has coached in the MPSA as well as a long stint at Clinton High School and knew the Saints would be tough.

“When I was at Hillcrest, we played their girls. Today, they were a really good team. They had quickness and they had a little more depth than we did. I thought our kids played their hearts out.”

The Flashes (8-12), who trailed by 12 in the third quarter, had a shot to make it a single possession game with under five minutes to go. A putback by Ford Biedenharn pulled St. Al to within 60-55 with 4:20 left.

After a Chris Lewis steal, St. Al’s first chance to cut it to three or less went awry when Luke Burnett was called for an offensive foul near mid-court. Trinity (16-4) missed its next shot and St. Al got one more opportunity to cut it to three or less, but a turnover on a high pass thwarted those plans.

Trinity took advantage with three straight baskets by Andrew Johnson to go up 11, at 66-55, with 2:52 to play.

“I thought when we got it to five, we’d have our chance to pull it out. But then we didn’t do what we needed to,” Miller said.

St. Al led for most of the first 13 minutes. Biedenharn closed the first quarter by hitting a 53-foot shot to give the Flashes a 19-13 lead.

Trinity’s pressure quickly tied the game, and closed out the half on a 9-1 run to lead 39-31. The Flashes hurt their cause by making just 9 of 21 free throws.

Giovanni Dent led Trinity with 15 points. The Flashes  were led by Sean Johnson with 17 points and four steals. Biedenharn had 12 points, seven assists and five steals.

Trinity girls beat Lady Flashes, 70-38

The Lady Flashes’ (5-15) first game against a MPSA school will be one they’d like to forget. Trinity (14-9) forced 32 turnovers in the first three quarters to build a 46-point spread. St. Al made a bit of comeback in the fourth quarter, outscoring Trinity’s reserves 18-4.

Trinity shot 58 percent (32-of-58) from the floor and led 42-19 at the half. Caroline Ketchings led all scorers with 22 points. Madelyn Cross and Lesley Pomeroy had 11 each.

St. Al was led by Tori Hines with 15 points and 11 rebounds.


Contact Jeff Byrd at