ORANGE >> Playing on the road in the Trinity League is always hard. It is even harder when your big man has to sit for a key part of the game due to foul trouble.

Despite those challenges Friday night, Mater Dei’s boys basketball team held a two-point lead going into the final quarter and held on for a 66-58 victory over host Orange Lutheran.

“They played with a lot more intensity than we did,” Mater Dei coach Gary McKnight said of the Lancers. “Our Trinity League on the road is really difficult. This year especially with all the teams being very good all across the board.”

Mater Dei (14-2, 1-0 in league) built a 12-point lead in the first half thanks mostly to Zach Davidson, who scored nine of his 12 points in the first two quarters. The Monarchs were hampered somewhat by freshman center Tee Bartlett having to go to the bench after he picked up his third foul midway through the second quarter.

“It’s always tough when someone gets into foul trouble, especially our big man,” Mater Dei guard Kaden Minter said. “He’s definitely a key factor to our team. We battled back and didn’t let it get to us.”

Minter finished with a team-high 13 points while Bartlett added nine points and six rebounds. Davidson also had 10 rebounds.

Even with Bartlett back on the court, Orange Lutheran (10-6, 0-1) rallied in the third quarter and came within two points of the Monarchs.

Seth Brown (18 points) and Cannon Potter (11 points) led the Lancers’ second-half surge.

The Monarchs didn’t let Orange Lutheran take the lead in the fourth quarter.

“They’re a very scrappy team,” Davidson said. “They never gave up. We were up by 12, 14 at one point, but it didn’t feel like it.”

Zach Wright scored eight points and David Manea added seven points for Orange Lutheran, which will play at Servite on Saturday, Jan. 8, at 3 p.m. in a league game that was postponed earlier in the week because of COVID-19.

(this story/news/article has not been edited by PostX News staff and is published from a syndicated feed)

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