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No 3 EHT boys hold off No. 10 St. Joseph 68-60
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No 3 EHT boys hold off No. 10 St. Joseph 68-60

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Egg Harbor Township vs. St. Joseph first half of high school basketball game at Hammonton Middle School Friday Jan 14, 2022.

HAMMONTON — The undefeated Egg Harbor Township High School boys basketball team faced adversity Friday night.

The Eagles were on the road in a loud, tiny gym.

They trailed at halftime.

EHT survived.

Carlos Lopez kept his poise in a chaotic setting and scored 23 points as the Eagles beat St. Joe 68-60 in a Cape-Atlantic League United Division game at Hammonton Middle School.

The Eagles were at their best during their fourth quarter, when they slowed the game’s pace and Lopez and Anthony Colon executed several pick-and-rolls.

“We trusted the coaching staff, and believed in each other,” Lopez said. “We didn’t change anything when we were down. We just kept doing what we were doing.”

Jay-Nelly Reyes (11 points, three blocks) sparked EHT in the second half. His back-to-back steals and layups to start the third quarter set the tone for the second half.

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Still, EHT withstood several St. Joe second-half surges. With EHT up six in the final two minutes, Eagles senior Isaiah Glenn made a pivotal steal and Colon blocked a shot to help preserve the win.

Junior guard DJ Germann scored 15 for EHT. Colon added 13 and grabbed seven rebounds.

Arnaldo Rodriguez led St. Joe with 23. Wildcats senior point guard Ja’son Prevard scored 16.

Egg Harbor Township (10-0) and St. Joe are both CAL and South Jersey contenders. EHT is ranked No. 3 in The Press’ Elite 11. St. Joe (7-2) is No. 10.

The game was played before a raucous but small crowd because of pandemic restrictions. The fans reacted to every shot, rebound and steal. There were a lot of them as the game was played at a fast pace.

“We play in environments like this all the time,” Lopez said. “We were prepared.”

Lopez sank the game’s first shot, a 3-pointer from the left with a St. Joe defender right on him. The Eagles jumped out to a 13-0 lead in the first four minutes.

EHT’s fast start didn’t rattle the Wildcats. Prevard and Rodriguez sparked St. Joe as it grinded its way back into the game.

Myles Solomon came off the bench to make a difference in the second quarter with four points, four rebounds and an assist.

But the Eagles were able to withstand the adversity and rally for the win. EHT might have proved its resiliency to the rest of the South Jersey basketball community with its performance Friday, but they did not surprise themselves.

“People found out what we already knew,” Lopez said. “We’re one of the best teams around.”

Contact: 609-272-7185

MMcGarry@PressofAC.com

Twitter @ACPressMcGarry

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