Kobie Bryant – 1978-2020

Kobe Bryant

Photo by: Digital First Media/Pete Bannan

By Matthew DeGeorge

Darryl Reynolds couldn’t quite believe what he was hearing.

Not when his agent texted him with what he hoped was a hoax. Not when the Villanova basketball team, for which Reynolds won a national title in 2016 and is the director of basketball operations, went their separate ways on an off day Sunday. Not as he and his family descended with dozens of mourners on Lower Merion High School to pay their respects to the player for whom the gymnasium is named.

“It’s the last thing we thought that we would be here for today,” Reynolds said. “… It doesn’t feel real.”

Though Reynolds was closer than most to the epicenter of the legend of Kobe Bryant, he felt the same shock as was reverberating throughout the sports world Sunday at news of the basketball player’s death, along with his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others in a helicopter crash in Southern California.

Bryant was in many ways a colossal figure, his one-named moniker often invoked far from its flesh-and-blood context. The last tweet he sent Saturday night congratulating LeBron James for passing him for third on the all-time NBA scoring list, in Philadelphia no less with James wearing “Mamba 4 Life” on his sneakers, spoke to the idea of Kobe, the 17-time All-Star and five-time NBA champion.

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Ketner, Camden propel Carroll past sharpshooting La Salle

John Camden (above) was one of two Carroll players with 23 points in the win. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL)

By Josh Verlin

There was some bad juju in La Salle College HS’s gym for Francis Bowe and Archbishop Carroll, even if they didn’t want to talk about it.

It was at the Explorers’ den last February that the Patriots gave up a 19-point lead after three quarters, watching their dreams of a Palestra appearance die in the Catholic League quarterfinals, after coming oh-so-close.

“It was our falter, but I tried to make sure to tell the guys, we don’t think about that,” Bowe said. “It’s a new year, and we’ve got to worry about this year’s Palestra.”

Sunday afternoon’s matchup wasn’t quite as high-stakes, though with both teams fighting for positioning in the PCL, there was certainly plenty on the line. And with La Salle sporting almost an entirely new lineup against a Carroll side that also had undergone some change since a year ago, there wasn’t a lot of personal revenge on the line, either.

“I think, philosophically, that’s just what I go with,” Bowe said. “That inspiration thing, no…new team, new day, let’s just take care of business.”

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Cassidy’s OT buzzer-beater lifts Academy Park

Jalen Cassidy drilled a buzzer-beating, 3-point field goal from the corner in overtime to lift the Academy Park boys basketball team to a 55-54 non-league victory Saturday at Central Bucks West.

The Knights (12-6) trailed by two points with five seconds left. Derrick Northern dribbled the length of the floor and dished the ball to Cassidy, who connected to give AP a nice rebound win after a disappointing loss to Chichester earlier in the week.

Northern led all players with 25 points and Cassidy finished with 11.

Ki Henson gave the Knights big minutes off the bench. Ending with eight points, Henson hit a 3-pointer in OT to give the Knights a brief lead and played well on the defensive side.

In other non-league action:

Sun Valley 52, Marple Newtown 50 >> The Vanguards trailed by three points entering the final quarter but quickly regained the lead and held off the host Tigers.

Billy Fisher dumped in 20 points to carry the Vanguards.

Ben Davis had six rebounds to go with his team-high 19 points for the Tigers (8-10), who received a 12-point effort by Mike Tansey.

(click on this link for more game stories and scores)

Pio comes to the rescue for Strath Haven

Strath Haven’s Ibo Pio, in action against Radnor last season, came to the rescue in the fourth quarter to lead the Panthers to a 51-47 come-from-behind victory over Harriton Friday night. (DFM File)

By Matthew DeGeorge

Strath Haven was staring down the barrel of a third straight loss, until Ibo Pio had his say.

Pio scored seven of his nine points in the fourth quarter, including game-tying, game-winning and game-icing points in the final minute of a 51-47 win over Harriton Friday night.

Pio tied the game at 47 with a minute left. He then hit a layup to take the lead with 15 seconds left and converted two free throws at the line to finish a 20-12 edge in the fourth quarter.

Luke Edwards (16 points) and Justin Morris (13 points) combined to hit seven 3-pointers. Each scored five points in the fourth for Haven (10-6, 6-6 Central).

Also in the Central League:

Garnet Valley 60, Conestoga 53 >> For a second straight game, the Jaguars found themselves in overtime. For a second straight game, Max Jackowsky was the OT savior.

Jackowsky scored all eight of his points in the extra frame as GV had six players score at least six points each.

Carl Schaller scored 14 points, Gannon McKee added 12 on four made 3-pointers and Neel Beniwal added 10 for the Jaguars (16-1, 11-1 Central) in their 13th straight win.

(click on this link for more game stories and scores)

PIAA District One Playoff Rankings & Brackets links

By Delcohoops.com Staff

It’s Playoff time again!  If you’re trying to keep track of who’s in and who isn’t simply go to our Playoff page (or click on our side bar link above and to the left of this article) and take a look at the District One ranking’s page and when the brackets are set you can follow those by clicking on the classification links.

We’ll be broadcasting various D1 playoff games as well as following any Delco team into the state finals.  We’ll be updating our pages with information, game broadcasts and news so stay tuned and visit often!

Duren, Roman survive Carroll to stay afloat in PCL

Jalen Duren (above) and Roman got over consecutive double-OT losses to survive a challenge from Carroll. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL)

By Ari Glazier

After two consecutive double overtime losses against PCL heavy hitters Archbishop Wood and Neumann-Goretti, and another overtime loss a few weeks ago against Bonner Prendergast, Roman Catholic managed to finish strong on Friday night against a talented Archbishop Carroll team. 

Down four at the half, Roman outscored Carroll by 10 after the break, leaving the Community College of Philadelphia with a 76-70 win, and crucially advancing to 5-3 in conference play.

Cahillite big man Jalen Duren, viewed those earlier losses as  stepping stones to prepare an inexperienced Roman team –– with two freshmen and two sophomores in the starting five –– for the rigors of Catholic League play.

“I feel like those really helped us more than it hurt us because now we know what we’ve gotta do,” said Duren, one of the top high school big men in the country. “We know how to approach these teams, how to close games…you learn to stay calm. Our guards got to really become floor generals in the end, really control the pace and just do what we know best.”

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