Balance Keeps Elder Unbeaten Heading Into New Year


Posted on 12/30/2020 at 11:08 a.m.

Lovette’s Season High Leads La Salle; Moeller Falls In Beach Ball Classic

Four players scored in double figures, led by 17 points from senior Michael Keehan and 16 from junior Andrew Harp, to help Elder erase an early deficit and head into the New Year undefeated after posting a 78-66 victory against neighborhood rival Western Hills in a non-conference basketball matchup Tuesday night at Western Hills, one of three games involving Greater Catholic League South Division schools played last night.

La Salle and Moeller were also in action during this holiday week, with the Lancers getting a season-high 27 points to go along with seven rebounds, three assists and five steals  from senior Justin Lovetta in a 55-50 road win against Turpin.  Moeller, however, suffered just its second loss in 33 games, as Calvary Christian Academy from Fort Lauderdale, Fla. erased an eight-point halftime deficit and three-point shortfall after three quarters by holding the Crusaders to just six fourth-quarter points in a 53-50 victory at the Beach Ball Classic in Myrtle Beach, S.C. 

St. Xavier (5-0), the only league team that did not play Tuesday, looks to close the calendar year unbeaten when it hosts Oak Hills at 4:30 this afternoon.  The Bombers, originally scheduled to face Purcell Marian to close out the week on Saturday, will now host West Clermont at that same day at Dick Berning Gymnasium on its North Bend Road campus, with the varsity game set to tip off at 4:30 as part of a tripleheader between the two schools.

Elder (7-0), which hosts Turpin at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in its next game, is just three wins shy of tying the Panthers’ best start in a decade since opening 10-0 back in 2012-13.  Senior David Larkins and junior Sean Keller added 14 and 13 points, respectively, for Elder – which trailed 16-14 after one quarter before outscoring the Mustangs, 22-11, in the second eight minutes to take control.

La Salle (5-2), with second-leading scorer Ayden Schneider not in the lineup, was tied with Turpin, 17-17, at halftime.  But the Lancers, who got 11 points from senior guard Kevin Crigler, took a five-point lead in the third quarter and were able to hold off Turpin despite sinking just 9-of-19 free throws.  Lovette had a strong shooting night, going 10-of-15, as the Lancers shot 52.4 percent from the field.  La Salle is scheduled to host Bishop Fenwick at 3 p.m. Thursday in Monfort Heights.

Moeller appeared headed to its second victory in as many days at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center, after grabbing a 31-23 halftime lead against Calvary Christian.  But the Crusaders, despite four players reaching double figures, could not maintain the advantage down the stretch.  Senior Alex Williams had 14 points and seven rebounds to pace Moeller (6-2)), while seniors Logan Duncomb, Evan Mahaffey and Aidan Noyes each scored 10 points.

Marvell Allen finished with a game-high 23 points for talent-rich Calvary Christian (7-2), which won for the second consecutive day in 16-team prep hoops showcase.  Up next for Moeller, which connected on only 10-of-18 free throws in the defeat, is First Baptist School from Charleston, S.C. at 5:15 today.  First Baptist (6-2) lost to Oak Ridge from Orlando, Fla., 96-40, just before Moeller took the court Tuesday night.