Cantwell-Sacred Heart spaced out Serra in Del Rey League win

In its purest form, the game of basketball is an art.

While Cantwell-Sacred Heart was far from replicating a Michelangelo on the hardwood Friday night, the Cardinals were still quite artistic in a 58-48 Del Rey League win at Serra.

For all intents and purposes, the first half was sloppy, as the Cardinals turned it over 14 times (13-9, 3-2 Del Rey League). Big man Gilgorije Rakocevic missed bunny after bunny in front of the rim. Still, the Cardinals held a five-point lead at the half.

The second half, however, was a different story. Cantwell executed extremely better on the offensive end and gave the Cavs (10-12, 1-4 Del Rey League) fits defensively.

"What are you going to do?" Serra head coach Dwan Hurt questioned after the game. "You take away something and you give up something.

"We tried to take away the outside but they dumped it in and they’re so good and so big inside. (They’re) very well coached and structured. It’s tough."

The floor spacing was supreme for the Cardinals as they worked the ball inside-out. The turnovers weren’t as frequent and Rakocevic found his touch as the Cardinals doubled its lead heading into the fourth quarter.

The Cantwell big connected on a jump hook just inside the free throw line to push the Cardinals’ lead to seven in the fourth quarter.

As he ran back to the defensive end, his face said it all.

"I was like finally," the Oregon State commit said. "I was happy. I hit one shot after (what felt like) 10 or 15 minutes."

Rakocevic finished with a team-high 15 points to lead four Cardinals in double figures.

When Rakocevic and fellow big Luka Radovic weren’t getting it done inside, guards Jacob Davison and Antonio Cortez were getting it done on the outside.

"(The floor spacing) makes it so that the defense works harder and then when they go down to offense it’s harder for them to score," Davison said. "It was good for us to spread the floor and get it inside and just execute."

Added head coach George Zedan: "really, it comes down to us just taking care of the ball better."

Rakocevic was, essentially, the closer. As Serra attempted a late rally, the 6’11" center connected on another jump hook, this one from point blank range with the left hand, to extend the lead to nine.

He was also clutch at the charity stripe, stepping up to the free throw line where he was 7-10 on the night, to stunt the Cavaliers chances.

Cantwell ended the game on a 9-4 run. The last two points allowed were a breakaway layup for the Cavaliers as time expired.