by Nate Marrero | Correspondent
OCOEE After a hotly-contested first half that saw six lead changes in the second quarter, the Ocoee Knights were unable to keep pace with the Archbishop Carroll Bulldogs of Miami.
The Bulldogs (16-2) slowly pulled away in the second half, eventually winning the Great 8 Championship Game, 68-52.
After the first quarter Ocoee (7-6) found itself down by only one point, 16-15. In the second quarter both teams exchanged leads multiple times and the Knights went into the half trailing 36-33.
Archbishop Carroll opened the second half on a 9-0 run, though, by way of three straight 3-pointers, to go up 45-33 with 5:46 left in the third quarter.
After that, Ocoee was unable to trim the Bulldogs' lead to less than double-digits the rest of the way.
Archbishop Carroll made 15 3-point shots to account for 66 percent of their points.
“It wasn’t a 16 point game —we played well enough to win,” said Ocoee Head Coach John “Sarge” Siers. “I’m very proud of our guys. If you look at the score, that sounds crazy, but we missed 10 easy shots. They made shots; we missed shots. We competed and played well together.”
Wade Duffus and Jean Derilus both led Ocoee with 10 points
The Knights will be back in action on Jan. 4 as they go on the road to take on the Jones Tigers.
Nate Marrero is a senior at Ocoee High School and an aspiring sports journalist.