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Riverview (FL) 68 Covington Catholic 43


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Apparently Dick Vitale was in the crowd watching Riverview's 2 Div 1 prospects.

 

Dick Vitale ‏@DickieV 2h2 hours ago

Watching 2 outstanding D-1 prospects both jrs for Riverview HS Sarasota, BRION WHITLEY & AJ CALDWELL @PaulBiancardi

 

Also have a senior pg, DJ Bryant, committed to UT-Arlington.

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Riverview blitzes Colonels early to win title

 

Five different players hit the first five baskets for the Riverview High boys basketball team.

 

“Anybody at any time can score the ball,” Rams junior guard AJ Caldwell said. “It’s not a one-person or two-person offense.”

 

Riverview had too many offensive weapons for Covington Catholic to guard.

 

The Rams gained control from the opening tip and never looked back in beating the Colonels, 68-43, in the final of the Suncoast Holiday Classic in front of a solid gathering that included Dick Vitale on Wednesday at Riverview High’s gymnasium.

 

Brion Whitley, AJ Caldwell, Dom Caldwell, DJ Bryant and Micah Fenn opened the game with two-pointers for the Rams, who led 14-7 after the first quarter.

 

“We’ve got a lot of guys who can fill it up,” Rams coach BJ Ivey said. “We obviously showed that from the start. I’m very proud of those guys.”

 

As hot as Riverview, which canned 7-of-9 shots, was in the first eight minutes, Covington Catholic was icy. The Colonels, who won the 2013 event with a win over North Port in the final, made 1-of-6 shots in the opening eight minutes.

 

“They’ve been the aggressor in all their games, and they’re a physical team,” Ivey said. “We wanted to make sure we came out and set the tone that we are going to be aggressive as well and put them on their heels a little.”

 

Tournament Most Valuable Player AJ Caldwell, who scored a game-high 21 points, helped the Rams increase the advantage by accounting for eight straight points in the middle of the season quarter, helping the Rams take a 28-14 lead into the locker room. Riverview was 11-for-16 from the floor in the first half; Covington Catholic 4-for-10, 1-for-8 from beyond the arc.

 

“It definitely helped us a lot,” AJ Caldwell said of the quick start. “Coach said before the game to throw the first punch. We got the first blow and carried it on from there and held the lead.”

 

The Rams, who lost to the Colonels in the semifinal round in overtime in 2013, kept the pressure on in the third quarter, mainly thanks to AJ Caldwell, who hit an array of shots, including a bank shot from the top of the key.

 

“We approached this game like any other game really,” AJ Caldwell said. “We prepared hard and everything turned out well in the end.”

 

Covington Catholic shot and played better in the second half, but had trouble gaining ground. Getting in foul trouble - putting Riverview in the bonus with more than a minute remaining in the third quarter - did not help the visitors.

 

A Whitley dunk with just more than 3 minutes remaining sent the Rams fans into a frenzy and opened a 20-point lead, the biggest of the night at the time.

 

In the end, the Rams had too many offensive weapons for the Colonels to defend.

 

Whitley, an all-tournament team selection, added 18 points and Bryant 13. D’Myron Wright pulled down six rebounds.

 

Not only did the Rams shoot 18-for-27 from the field, but they made 23-of-25 free throws, including 20-of-22 in the second half.

 

“We approached it more like a playoff-type game,” Ivey said. “Anytime you get to play for a championship, it’s special, especially in our tournament. It’s been a few years since we won it. and these guys deserve it.”

 

Covington Catholic received 13 points from sophomore guard Aiden Ruthsatz, Coach Scott Ruthsatz’s son, and nine each from junior guard Cole VanHandorf and AJ Mayer.

 

Ruthsatz and VonHandorf, who is receiving interest from Division I colleges, were named to the all-tournament team.

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Had a twitter exchange with an overzealous jerk Riverview fan bragging about CVH getting shutdown. Can't stand when people tear HS Kids down.

When you state you shut a player down, why is that tearing a kid down. Just maybe some of that came from CVH having his web page, just wondering.

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