Analy Faces Cardinal Newman In Matchup Of Top Empire Teams

Posted By Press Democrat Staff Writer Michael Coit:

In a matchup of top Empire boys’ basketball teams, Analy hosts Cardinal Newman on Wednesday, resuming annual home-and-home games between the Tigers and Cardinals.

Tipoff is 7 p.m. at the Analy gym in Sebastopol.

Analy is playing only its second home game, yet the Tigers have been road warriors going 7-1 on the season. The only loss was to a very strong Sacramento high team in overtime on Saturday in the finals of the St. Hope Classic. Analy won the Drake tournament.

Five players return from the Analy squad that reached the NorCal basketball playoffs again last season. Still, the Tigers have a good mix of experience and newcomers.

All-Empire player of the year Max Fujii is back for his senior season. Fujii is scoring 25 points a game, including making nearly half of his 3-point attempts. Fellow senior Eli Alcantar is the only other player in double figures with 15 points per contest.

Down low, the Tigers are led by first year varsity players Nathan Molony-Benjamin with 8 rebounds a game and Geddy Dukes with 6 rebounds per contest.

In going 5-2 on the season, Cardinal Newman has only been pushed in losses to San Marin and Pinole Valley.

The duo of Bobby Sharp and Xavier McCall again leads the Cardinals. The returning first team All-Empire guards each score about 17 points a game.

Cardinal Newman took third place in both the Rose City Basketball Tournament, which the Cardinals host, and last weekend’s Brett Callan Memorial Tournament, at Casa Grande.