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It’s been a while since 24th year Brother Rice coach Pat Richardson has won a Christmas tournament. And when he was asked how long it’s been after Saturday night’s 51-50 Hinsdale South Tournament title game win over Lake Forest, he didn’t hesitate to answer.
“York Tournament 2003, when we had Bob Frasor,” Richardson said.
Well, now his answer will be 2012 when they had Alex Majewksi and Cal Kennedy. Majewski was voted tournament MVP for what he did the first three games. Kennedy will be remembered for what he did in the title game, and that was scoring eight points -- including two threes -- in the final minute-and-a-half to hold off the Scouts (10-3).
Sam Downey, a 6-foot-9 center, scored 12 of his 20 points in the fourth for the Scouts and would have likely been the tournament MVP if the result was the other way around.
“That big guy was impossible to guard and they are really a good team,” Richardson said. “Cal had a rough shooting day yesterday and he came up big for us tonight and they did a great job on Alex.”
Majewski had scored 33 and 30 points in the last two wins but was held to just 13 Saturday night. Kennedy picked up the slack finishing with 17, including 10 in the fourth. His first fourth-quarter three-pointer came with 1:22 left, breaking a 43-all tie. The next came with 48 seconds left and put the Crusaders (11-2) up 49-45.
He then hit a pair of free throws with 25.8 seconds left, increasing the lead to 51-47. The Scouts’ Ben Thompson (15 points) hit a three with 14.7 second left to close the gap to 51-50. Then, following an immediate foul and a missed one-and-one by Ray Rubio (12 points), a deep, open three-point attempt by George Quall fell just short.
“Feels good to be MVP but not as good as winning the championship,” Majewski said. “Cal played great and did a good job guarding the big guy. Down the stretch he was huge.”
The Crusaders held the biggest lead of the first half when they started the second quarter with a 9-2 run and led 23-16. The Scouts answered with a half-ending 8-3 run behind a pair of threes by Ben Simpson to close within 26-24. Simpson led all scorers at that point with 12.