SAN JOSE — It’s been a great year for the St. Ignatius Wildcats: A young team that has exceeded expectations, finishing in second place in the prestigious WCAL.
However, the boys from the Sunset couldn’t continue that magic in Tuesday night’s 59-51 loss to Archbishop Mitty in the CCS Open Division Semifinals.
Mitty used a 15-0 run bridging the end of the first quarter and start of the second to open up a 25-14 lead, and while St. Ignatius closed the gap to four, the Wildcats could never get any closer at San Jose’s Independence High School.
Mitty’s size was too much for SI to handle. Riley Grigsby, son of former Cal star Al Grigsby, scored 12 points while pulling down a game-high eight rebounds. While the Wildcats are skilled at the guard positions, they had no way to match up with Grigsby’s 6-5 frame.
Mike Diaz, Mitty’s 6-8 center, finished with just nine points, but his size kept St. Ignatius away from the hoop all night long.
St. Ignatius (16-10) was led by junior point guard Darrion Trammell. While Trammell had been held in check for the past two weeks, he put together a sensational second half on Wednesday night to keep the Wildcats in the game. Fourteen of his game-high 17 points came in the second half, highlighted by a stepback 3-pointer to trim the Mitty lead to four.
Unfortunately for St. Ignatius, the Monarchs had an answer every time the Wildcats tightened the score. Freshman Devan Sapp finished with 12 points for Mitty on a quartet of 3-pointers, including the response after Trammell cut the lead to four.
Kyle Peterson also finished with 12 points for Mitty (16-10).
With his team losing for the fifth time in six games, SI head coach Rob Marcaletti was not satisfied.
“I thought we gave up too many chances,” he said. “We got off to a great start, but then we got into too much isolation and went through a scoring drought.”
The loss doesn’t mean that SI will soften up, however.
“We’re not satisfied,” said Marcaletti. “We’re hungry as hell.”
Marcaletti acknowledged that Mitty might be the best team in the area. The Monarchs have played their best basketball as of late, after spending most of the year around the .500 mark.
St. Ignatius will play for third place on Thursday night against St. Francis, while Mitty will play in the championship on Friday night at Santa Clara against Bellarmine.