Lawrence Academy Has Big Weekend at NPSI | Monday, February 11th, 2008

Lawrence Academy Has Big Weekend at NPSI

Maybe Lawrence Academy felt like they had something to prove.  As the defending class C champions and owners of a 17-2 record, including 10 straight victories over the likes of Tilton and Cushing, Lawrence hadn’t been getting the type of attention that they had deserved…That shouldn’t be a problem anymore. 

This past weekend they knocked off two class A schools defeating Northfield Mount Hermon on Saturday and Worcester Academy on Sunday.  The three headed monster of Stevie Mejia, Darryl Cato-Bishop, and Denzel Brito was sensational in both games as they seem to be hitting their stride just in time for the NEPSAC tournament.  For Mejia there was extra incentive given that he was playing at his future home for the next four years, following his commitment to URI almost exactly one year ago.  

Saturday’s game was a classic battle.  NMH entered the game playing some of their best basketball of the season having won 13 of their last 14 and 4 in a row.  But Mejia set the tone in the first half as he scored 17 points before intermission while doing an equally effective job pressuring the ball at the opposite end of the floor.  After going into the break with a slim 38-36 lead, NMH was able to increase their advantage to 12 with only 8 minutes remaining in the game.  But that is when the defensive effort of Lawrence was able to change the game, as they held NMH scoreless for the next 6 minutes of action.  Although Mike Marra had another outstanding game (25 points and 5 three-pointers) Cato-Bishop did a tremendous job of locking him up down the stretch.  Ultimately, Lawrence chipped away until they had finally taken a lead that their clutch foul shooting down the stretch protected as they won 77-74.  Mejia finished the game with 29 points, 7 steals, and a handful of assists while Cato-Bishop had 24 points, including 3 three-pointers, and 10 rebounds.   

Sunday’s game was not nearly as dramatic as Saturday’s as Lawrence simply dominated Worcester.  They opened the game with a 20-2 run and never led by less than 17.  Brito made 4 three-point shots in the first half and finished with 28 points.  Cato-Bishop continued his excellence on the defensive end of the floor while also scoring 23 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.  But Mejia remains the engine behind this team as he had 21 points, 8 rebounds, and 7 steals and continued to harass the ball-handler for all 40 minutes. 

Overall, Lawrence Academy proved two things this weekend.  First, Mejia, Cato-Bishop, and Brito showed that they are all stars in their own right.  Mejia may just be the best point guard in the region, Cato-Bishop perhaps the most underestimated player, and Brito one of the most talented youngsters in New England.  Secondly, behind their “big three” this is a team who can clearly compete with anyone, so stay tuned as Lawrence and St. Mark’s appear headed for a rematch of last year’s class C championship game.