Cards Beat Seahawks, Advance to CUA Classic
Banzhaf leads Cardinals with 18
WASHINGTON - After a slow start the Catholic University men's basketball team (6-5) overcame their holiday malaise to defeat the Salve Regina Seahawks (1-7) in the semifinals of the 21st annual CUA Classic held at the DuFour Center on Saturday. CUA freshman Jason Banzhaf (Livingston, N.J./Seton Hall Prep) had a solid game posting his second career double-double with 18 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Cardinals.
The Cardinals struggled to take the lead in the first half despite shooting over 50 percent while the Seahawks managed just 33 percent. Salve Regina guard Justin Woodworth hit four three's to keep the Seahawks close as the teams saw their seventh tie with seven minutes remaining. A layup by Cardinal frosh Chris McGrew (Burtonsville, Md./Paint Branch) sparked a CUA run that included six Banzhaf points giving them a comfortable 38-27 lead at the break.
McGrew led the Cards with 11 points in the first half while Banzhaf contributed eight as well as a squad-high four rebounds. The squads both had 18 rebounds for the first 20 but CUA managed an advantage in turnovers committing just six to SRU's eight. Woodworth led the Seahawks with 12 points in the first.
The Cards kept rolling in the second half hitting a pair of three's in the opening minutes to push the lead to 17 before Salve Regina could answer. The strong shooting continued and even with an incredibly young lineup the Cardinals managed to hold on. With eight minutes remaining Salve Regina had decreased the deficit to 11 and looked to be ready to make a run but some big plays in the paint ended any thought of a Seahawk comeback. A three from Matt Fazzini (Wayne, Pa./Conestoga) made the score 63-48 with five minutes to go sealing the game as the Cards cruised to a 75-59 victory.
Banzhaf led CUA with 18 points and 12 rebounds while McGrew contributed 14 and Fazzini 13. The Cardinals shot an outstanding 52 percent for the game as the defense held the Seahawks to just 33 percent and 15 turnovers. Catholic University also outrebounded Salve Regina 40-35. Woodworth led the Seahawks with 14 for the game.
With the win the Cardinals advance to the championship game for the 20th time in program history. They will face Bates College who defeated CCNY 69-53 in the first game of the day at 3 p.m.