Canterbury High School vs John Madejski Academy

The Canterbury High School came out on top with a 77-71 victory over JMA on Wednesday in a crucial battle for playoff positioning.

A back and forth affair, with multiple lead changes, was contested between the two teams, with Canterbury able to pull clear in the second half and hold off a late comeback from JMA.

“Today was tough!” said Canterbury head coach Jesse Sazant. “JMA definitely made it tough for us but I’m really pleased the way that Tunde and Danny stepped up today at different times.”

The first quarter was closely contested with multiple lead changes as Canterbury took a slim 17-16 lead. Tunde Oyerinde and Jonathan Brown scored 5 each on the opening quarter for Canterbury while JMA captain Matt Armstrong led the way with 4.

The second quarter continued to swing back and forth as Adria Nosa-Castillo and Oyerinde took over for their respective teams making big shots. Oyerinde racked up 13 points in the quarter only to see Nosa-Castillo outdo him with 14 of his own. JMA forced Canterbury into numerous turnovers and by halftime they had a slim 39-35 lead.

A series of offensive rebounds from Elliot Bailey built momentum for Canterbury early in the second half. Forward Daniel Beard asserted himself, scoring 9 points in the quarter, as Canterbury moved out to a lead of their own. Despite resistance from David Obediah and Armstrong, Canterbury led 58-55 going into the final quarter.

Alex Drincic scored 5 quick points for JMA early in the quarter to tie the game up at 60. However, Beard continued his strong second half play as he sparked a 9-2 run midway through the quarter. Canterbury retained a gap of 6-10 points through the rest of the fourth until a big 3 from Armstrong sparked a late run by JMA.

Twice they got it back to a one possession game with the ball but were unable to score on either possession as Canterbury held on for the 6 point win.

Oyerinde led Canterbury with 23 points (18 in first half) and 5 three point shots. Beard finished with 17, all in the second half and Brown had 12. For JMA, Nosa finished with 18 (16 in first half), while Armstrong, Drincic and Obediah scored 11 each.

Brown summed up the win saying, “It was a scrappy game today with the game going back and forth. But we had certain players stepping up and making plays, credit to Tunde and Daniel Beard. We all stayed together and grinded out the win.”

Canterbury and JMA are now tied for second place at 7-4. Next week Canterbury host Oaklands while JMA host Barking Abbey.

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