A talented and poised St. Andrew's team defeated Smyrna 63-50 Thursday night on the Cardinals' home court.
The Eagles suffered their eighth loss of the season against five victories despite some strong play from Ja'vier Worthy and Stedman Kpana who battled all night long against taller opponents.
“I don't know if it was their height advantage that bothered us as much as we didn't play with as much energy as we should have,” said Smyrna coach Andrew Mears. “We finished the game with some energy, but we're not played with the sense of urgency that's needed to be more successful on the court.”
The Cardinals played solid, fundamental basketball throughout the contest, outscoring Smyrna 14-8 in the first quarter. St. Andrew's continued to play steady basketball and control the tempo in the second quarter, as well. This resulted in a 27-18 lead by the end of the first half.
Led by Myles Stephens and Jordan Bonner, the Cardinals turned up the tempo in the third quarter and outscored Smyrna 21-13 to lengthen their lead to 48-31. Again, St. Andrew's height advantage gave the Cardinals more shooting opportunities and denied Smyrna second-chance opportunities.
The Eagles made a small run midway through the fourth quarter, but the Cardinals kept their advantage at or above double digits to finish out the victory.
“We played well through most of the game, “said St. Andrew's coach Terell Myers. ”We have had a lot of key injuries this season, and we missed a lot of practice due to the weather and our school schedule, so it was nice to get the victory. Myers added he was pleased with his team's defense, which helped set the tempo throughout the game.
Stephens led the Cardinals with 24 points, and Bonner added 23 in the victory.
Worthy totaled 16 points for the Eagles, Kpana added 10 points, and Donte Ritchie scored nine.
The Eagles are now 5-8 on the season and will face St. Elizabeth's on the road on Saturday, beginning at 1:30 p.m.
St. Andrew's improved to 5-5, and the team has won four straight. The Cardinals will play at the Tatnall School on Saturday at 1:30 p.m.