February 23rd, 2012
Rocks Win Program's 16th District Title
Dieudonne scores 27 as Trinity rolls in 27th finals
The Seneca Redhawks had some fight in them, unfortunately for their home fans it was only for one quarter as the Trinity Shamrocks mostly cruised on its way to the 27th District Title.
The Shamrocks won 75-46 at Seneca High School Thursday evening.
Trinity forward Nathan Dieudonne was too much for the Redhawks to handle right from the start. He scored the first five points of the game to sprint his team to a lead it would never relinquish.
Diendonne led all scorers with 27 points and logged 7 strong rebounds.
“He’s so active,” Trinity head coach Mike Szabo said of his stellar senior. “He’s long, he runs the floor so he can score in transition. The biggest thing is for a big guy, he moves so well, which is good for us defensively and tough on the opponent.”
Dieundonne may have been a little too active in the first quarter. After the Seneca bench was called for a technical foul for arguing calls, Dieudonne was called for one as well for stating his case too strongly after being called for a foul. The Shamrocks led 16-11 after the first quarter.
Seneca guard Devin White did his best to keep his team in the contest, scoring 17 points in the first half on several impressive drives, but the Shamrocks were simply outmatched.
Shamrock senior Charles Foster hit two 3-pointers to begin the second quarter to extend a seven point lead. His teammates then displayed their unselfishness, using tremendous ball-rotation to find Dieudonne under the rim for a layup. That was followed by a nice assist to junior guard Darryl Hicks for a slam.
Trinity finished the game with 17 assists compared to 4 for the Redhawks.
Foster finished the first half in style with a steal on an inbounds pass that he put in for a layup just as the buzzer sounded. The Shamrocks led 47-25 at the half.
Though Trinity scored efficiently all night, it was its defense that stood out. The Shamrocks forced 28 turnovers on the night, 12 off of steals, and that was the key that broke the game open.
“It was the defense,” Szabo said afterwards. “I thought we played really, really hard and went on a good run there in the second quarter. That was big going into the half”.
The Shamrocks emerged from the locker room even more determined. Dieudonne picked up right where he left with a strong bucket in the paint and teammate James Quick scored his only field goal of the evening with another nice bucket at the rim.
The fourth quarter was largely show time for the Shamrocks. Dieduonne skied for a slam dunk off of a bounce pass, and point guard Troy Saxton hit on his only field goal attempt of the night from behind the arc.
For the exclamation point, Quick drove the lane after a Seneca turnover and bounced the ball off the backboard for Dieudonne to slam home. With a 70-33 lead, coach Szabo had seen enough and made wholesale substitutions at the next game stoppage.
The Trinity substitutes finished the final minutes, and the Shamrocks won easily, 75-46.
The 27th District Title is a significant accomplishment, but this group has larger post-season aspirations. When asked how a team playing so sharply keeps its edge, Szabo said, “I don’t need to say too much. They’re very focused.”
The victory marked the 16th district championship in its program’s history.
The Trinity Shamrocks advance to the opening round of the 7th Region Tournament. They will begin regional play on Tuesday at Bellarmine University's Knights Hall.