Charlotte Catholic turned to fundamental basketball for its third win in four games.
The Cougars attacked the backboard in the second half of their nonconference game against Myers Park on Wednesday and rewarded themselves with a 56-46 win.
Catholic (3-1) outscored the Mustangs 20-12 in the fourth quarter to pull away late. Much of that advantage came via free-throw shooting, with the Cougars connecting on 12-of-18 in the final eight minutes, compared to Myers Park’s 8-of-15.
“We did a better job of controlling the ball in the fourth quarter,” Catholic coach Mike King said. “Then we were shooting free throws in the middle of the third quarter, so it came down to a free-throw shooting contest and we made enough, although we missed quite a few.”
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Three Cougars hit double figures, led by Josh Brodowicz, who scored all of his game-high 14 points after the break. Joe Scibelli added 13 and Nick Suhosky chipped in 10.
Nick Goble led Myers Park (3-2) with 13 points and Zaqwaun Matthews added 12.
Neither side could produce much breathing space early as they struggled to find the range. Myers Park took a 25-19 lead to intermission with Goble leading the way with eight points, followed by Matthews and Bill Robertson with five each.
“We never got any type of flow offensively or defensively, really,” Mustangs coach Wes Hepler said. “We fouled way too much. I think there were 21 fouls called on us in the second half, and I think we had 15 or 16 in the first half.”
Catholic took advantage in the second half by marching to the free throw line. The Cougars hit 9-of-14 tries in the third quarter to seize the momentum and a 36-34 lead.
Myers Park pulled ahead 40-38 on two Zailan Peeler free throws with 6 minutes, 23 seconds left, but Catholic reeled off the next seven points to pull in front for keeps.
“We knew they would come at us in waves and with a player like Matthews, they’re never out of it,” King said, “so we were just trying to get rebounds and get stops and make some shots when we could.”