By Steve Svetovich
Pat Galvin and Tom Montefour combined for 29 points in leading the Holy Cross Crusaders to a 53-44 win over Mid Valley to clinch the first half Lackawanna League Division III title Saturday, January 27, at Carbondale High School.
The dynamic duo made several key plays in the final minutes of the playoff contest as coach Al Callejas and his Crusaders claimed the first half title.
Montefour, despite his undersized 5-foot-11 frame, was a dominant force on the boards for the Crusaders. Playing the low post, he helped Holy Cross out rebound the Spartans by a wide 35-22 margin. Montefour, battling all the way, hauled down 10 of those rebounds.
Holy Cross really dominated on the offensive rebounding, 17 to 3.
Galvin led the Crusaders with 16 points while Montefour contributed 13 to the playoff win.
Tyler Mozeleski added 10 points for the Crusaders.
The Spartans’ Colin Hazelton, who scored 13 points, converted on two straight three-point plays to cut the Holy Cross lead to 32-30 midway through the third quarter.
However, the Crusaders came storming back in style.
The clutch performing Mozeleski powered his way inside for a bucket and a 34-30 Crusaders lead.
Mid Valley’s Vinny Talluto, who scored seven points, then hit a long jumper to cut the lead to 34-32.
However, Montefour and Kieran Burrier, who had seven points in the win, both scored before the diminutive Galvin stole the ball and went all the way for another bucket and a 40-32 Holy Cross lead just 25 seconds into the final quarter.
Still, Mid Valley was not done yet.
J.J. Glinsky, who led Mid Valley with 15 points, scored on two consecutive possessions and Talluto hit a clutch 3-pointer to trim the Crusaders lead to 40-39, with 4:28 left in the game.
That’s when the Crusaders came through again. The Crusaders put together an 11-2 run, including an impressive drive for a key bucket by Galvin, with 1:24 left in the contest. The spinning drive gave Holy Cross a commanding 51-41 lead.
Callejas praised the Crusaders defense, rebounding, an overall team effort following the big win which gave his team the first half title.
Montefour, playing a tremendous all-around game, also had five steals in the playoff win.
The win raised the Crusaders record to 5-1 in the division and 10-5 overall.
The Crusaders played the playoff contest without one of its star players, Caleb Callejas, who was out with a sprained ankle.
Mid Valley, coached by Mike Abda, dropped to 5-1 in the division and 9-7 overall.
The Spartans’ Glinsky leads the Lackawanna League Division III in scoring average with 14.3 points per game at press time.
Burrier leads the Crusaders with 11.5 points per game at press time. Galvin averages 11.2 points per contest for Holy Cross.