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Morris manhandled by Ottowa, John Carroll

12/30/2013, 11:25pm CST
By Dick Goss | dgoss@stmedianetwork.com

Morris rallied briefly in the third quarter but never got closer than nine points as Ottawa and tournament MVP John Carroll ran off with a 68-50 victory in the Plano Christmas Classic championship.

If Morris was destined to win the 51st annual Plano Christmas Classic, lightning would’ve had to strike twice.

The Redskins trailed Burlington Central 33-18 at halftime of Saturday night’s semifinal but came back to win 52-45.

In Monday night’s championship game against top-seeded Otttawa, the Redskins found themselves in a 37-21 halftime hole.

Morris rallied briefly in the third quarter but never got closer than nine points as Ottawa and tournament MVP John Carroll ran off with a 68-50 victory.

It was déjà vu all over again as Ottawa (11-1) won the event in 2012, when Carroll also was the MVP.

“He’s the returning MVP for a reason,” Morris coach Joe Blumberg said after the 6-5 senior forward dropped 38 points on the Redskins. “He shoots well from the perimeter and posts up well. We don’t have anyone quick enough or lengthy enough to handle him all over the floor.”

Carroll hit 16-of-24 shots and grabbed nine rebounds.

Morris (8-2), the No. 6 seed in the 24-team extravaganza, also suffered scoring droughts on a night when the Redskins could least afford them. They hit 20 of 56 shots (35.7 percent) including 4 of 19 from three-point range.

“We couldn’t handle their length inside or outside,” Blumberg said. “We had some things in place to handle their overplay and never got to them.

“But this will be a good learning experience, playing against a fundamentally sound and talented team like that. We have to learn from our mistakes and move on to the new year.”

Austin Patterson led Morris with 11 points and seven rebounds. Tanner Sampson and Evan Bjelland added 10 points and Jake Walker eight.

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