Following a pair of narrow victories to open the Meramec Holiday Tournament, Washington settled for fourth-place honors with losses to CBC and DeSmet.
The fourth-seeded Blue Jays (9-4) lost to top-seeded CBC Saturday in the semifinals 79-62 and to third-seeded DeSmet Sunday in the third place game, 61-51, at St. Louis Community College-Meramec.
Second-seeded Hazelwood Central (7-3) defeated CBC (9-3) Sunday in the championship game, 59-45.
“We have to take this whole experience, digest it, and know what it’s like to play at a high level. If we want to go anywhere, we’re going to have to face a team like DeSmet or CBC,” said Washington Head Coach Chip Sodemann. “Our goal coming in was to play on the fourth day. We got four games out of it, so we can’t be disappointed there. I would have liked to have come out maybe with a couple of more wins, but overall, it was a good experience for our guys.”
Washington was given the Ken Braden team sportsmanship award.
Hot-shooting CBC connected for 13 three-pointers, 10 in the first half, in its semifinal victory over Washington.
The loss snapped the Blue Jays’ seven-game winning streak.
Washington could not keep pace with the Cadets in the first half, trailing 24-12 after one quarter and 44-24 at halftime.
The Blue Jays outscored CBC in the second half, 38-35.
“You see what a high level of basketball is like. Our guys are learning what it’s like to play at a high level,” Sodemann said. “All the credit goes to those guys. They made shots. That’s what good teams do.”
Ronnie Suggs led the way for Washington with 23 points, going 3-3 from three point range and 8-10 from the free-throw line.
Brad Carpenter added 12 points, shooting 4-6 from three-point range.
Luke Schroepfer finished with 11 points, three rebounds and three assists.
Jacob Mulkey collected four points and three rebounds.
Jared Walde, Luke Hasenjaeger, Austin Subke, Cory Epperson, Christian Hardesty and Cole Schroepfer each scored two points.
Jordan Barnett, a 6-8 junior, led CBC with 26 points, going 6-8 from three-point range. He nailed five three-pointers in the first half.
Ray Doby, a 6-7 junior, added 20 points, shooting 9-10 from the field.
Beau Bommarito, a 6-3 junior, finished with 14 points.
“You have to guard all of them. Even their center came out and hit one,” Sodemann said. “When they were clicking and had the energy going, with a good team like that, you have to find a way to slow them down and take the wind out of their sails. We weren’t able to do that.”
Washington held a 31-24 halftime lead over DeSmet, but was outscored 37-20 in the second half for the loss.
The Spartans (8-3) led 39-37 after three quarters.
“We hit some shots and our defense got them to do what we wanted them to do, which was to take excessive threes,” Sodemann said. “They made some adjustments at halftime. They got the ball to the high post too much. We just couldn’t seem to counter what they were doing and they got some easy buckets. They’re well coached. We knew they were going to do that.”
DeSmet’s senior point guard Jimmy Barton was able to find post players Alec Bausch, 6-6, and John Barron, 6-7, for high-percentage shots.
Barron finished with 24 points and 11 rebounds. Barton had 12 points and six assists.
“We didn’t make any adjustments to the adjustments they made. You have to do that against a good team,” Sodemann said. “We gave up a lot of easy baskets. Their two big guys play well together. They have some talented guys.”
Schroepfer scored 13 points for Washington, 11 in the first half, to go with five rebounds and two assists.
Suggs and Carpenter both added 12 points. Suggs also had four assists and three rebounds. Carpenter added three assists.
Walde collected four points and 12 rebounds. Hasenjaeger also scored four points.
Mulkey, Subke and Epperson each scored two points. Dane Meyer also played.
“I felt like (Saturday) our intensity wasn’t where it needed to be and we really harped on that in pregame. The guys responded in the first half,” Sodemann said. “We just weren’t able to make the adjustments we needed to.”