March 1, 2008

Landesberg leads Cross Past St. Peters

St. Peter's featured a balanced scoring attack and showed plenty of heart against Holy Cross on Friday night. Like most teams though, the Eagles couldn't come up with any kind of answer for the Knights' Sylven Landesberg.

Behind 39 points from its Virginia-bound senior, Holy Cross edged St. Peter's, 64-50 in the CHSAA Intersectional Quarterfinals at Christ the King.

The Staten Island champion Eagles rallied from a 17-point halftime deficit to make the Knights sweat briefly, but in the end, Landesberg was too much for St. Peter's.

Cross opened the game on an 8-2 run before a pull-up from the foul line by Ryan Woods cut the Knight lead to four. The Flushing school immediately went on a 6-0 run, however, stretching its lead to 14-4 on an alley-oop lay-up by Landesberg from Kayvon Roberts. Holy Cross led 20-7 after one.

The Knights didn't relent in the second quarter. Landesberg converted a lay-up off an assist from Blaise Ffrench to put Cross up 31-11 with 4:49 left in the half. St. Peter's cut the advantage to 15, but the Knights held sway to lead 37-20 at the break.

St. Peter's, however, was resilient in the second half. A pair of quick buckets cut the Cross lead to 13, eliciting a timeout from Knights' Coach Paul Gilvary.

Holy Cross responded, pushing its lead to 44-28 with 3:38 left in the third, but then the streaky Woods began to heat up, nailing back-to-back threes to cut the Cross lead to 10.

Landesberg scored the last six points of the quarter for the Knights, but St. Peter's answered with a three-pointer each from guards Ricky Dunning and Steven Mondelli. Cross led 50-40 at the end of three.

Woods hit a long jumper early in the fourth to snip the Knight lead to eight, but Cross came back with a 6-0 run, capped by a three-point play from Landesberg. St. Peter's pulled to within 56-46 on a fast break jam by OD Anosike, but Roberts, Ffrench and Landesberg then hit consecutive field goals to put the Knights up 16 with 3:07 left.

The Eagles couldn't get closer than 12 down from then on.

Landesberg scored consistently, serving as a stabilizing force for Holy Cross against the feisty Eagles. The versatile guard chipped in 11 points in each of the first two quarters, 10 in the third and seven in the fourth, scoring mainly in transition and around the basket.

Roberts added 13 for the Knights, while OD Anosike led three Eagles in double figures with 13.

Holy Cross will play Rice in the semifinals of the CHSAA Intersectional's on Wednesday night at St. John's University.

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