Spartans Down Cards in Bill Sudeck Championship

Spartans Down Cards in Bill Sudeck Championship

Spartans Down Cards in Bill Sudeck Championship
Olivero and Fazzini named all-tournament


CLEVELAND, Ohio- The Catholic University men's basketball squad fell in the championship game of the Bill Sudeck Holiday Tournament Sunday afternoon to hosts, Case Western Reserve (4-1). The Cardinals were edged 74-70 by the Spartans to move to 3-2 on the season. Junior Nick Olivero (Fairfax, Va./W.T. Woodson) and sophomore Matt Fazzini (Wayne, Pa./Conestoga) were both named to the all-tournament squad for their performances over the past two days.

Olivero started the game where he had left off on Saturday hitting the first shot of the game, a three-pointer to put the Cards ahead. However, that would be CUA's only lead of the game as the Spartans came back and managed to hold on to a small advantage. Jason Banzhaf (Livingston, N.J./Seton Hall Prep) brought the Cards within one midway through the half posting six points, three rebounds and an assist in two-minute span. That was as close as CUA would get with the Spartans pulling away going up by as much as 13 before the Cards cut it to nine 43-34 at the break.

D.J. Johnston (Ambler, Pa./Germantown Academy) led the Cards with 11 points in the first while Fazzini added six rebounds. Case Western shot 51 percent from the field while the Cardinals managed 37 percent. Statistically, the team were almost even with both posting three turnovers and CWR with a 21-20 rebounding advantage.

The Cardinals worked their way back in the second coming within two points thanks to a pair of free throws from sophomore Ryan Jones (Coudersport, Pa./Coudersport). Five minutes later, the Cards were still just two possessions away from pulling ahead when Olivero hit another three making the score 59-58. Despite threatening, CUA couldn't pull ahead and eventually fell 74-70.

Johnston led the Cardinals with 16 points as well as five rebounds. Wes Parker (Germantown, Md./Northwest) was the second-highest with 11 while Olivero added 10. Fazzini had 12 rebounds in the game along with seven points. The Cards shot 32.9 percent and Case Western shot 46.7 percent. Both teams brought down 43 rebounds and the Cards had just five turnovers while the Spartans had 10.

The Cards will have the week off before traveling to North Carolina for the first game of the Roger Taylor Invitational. CUA will play Piedmont at 6 p.m., on Friday.