The two teams will meet Saturday for a berth in the Salem District tourney.
By JOHN BUTERA
SALEM -- Using speed and second-chance baskets, the Cardinal Mooney High basketball team turned back Springfield, 58-52, in an opening-round boys tournament game Wednesday at Salem High School.
In the other game, Lisbon's Marcus Judy came up big as the Blue Devils nipped Girard, 46-45.
The Cardinals and Blue Devils will face each other Saturday night in hopes of advancing to the Salem District.
L.J. Sutton took scoring honors for Mooney (11-10) with 19 points, while Desmond Marrow chipped in 15.
Springfield, playing without point guard and number two scorer Dane Dobson, received 12 points from Dave McClearn and 10 from Andrew Schuler.
Judy scored 29 points to lead Lisbon while Brett Dutton had 12 for Girard.
Mooney takes early lead
Mooney jumped out 8-2 in the opening game and it seemed like Springfield spent the rest of the night fighting back.
In control 14-13 after one, the Cardinals got two three point shots from Jaron Howell and then two baskets each from Desmond Morrow and L.J. Sutton in building a 30-23 lead at intermission.
Mooney was hitting 50 percent of its shots at this point -- 14 of 28 -- while going the first 15 minutes with only two fouls.
By halftime, the Cardinals made just three turnovers and were starting to assert themselves inside.
"Obviously they were very quick and very athletic," Springfield coach Grant Spaite said. "Plus we gave up way too much inside -- too many second chance baskets.
"But only one team in Division III is going to finish the season happy," Spaite said.
Springfield, winners of the Inter-County League and the tourney's number-four seed, ended at 16-5.
Down 10 in period three, the Tigers got five points from Dave McClearn to pull closer at 37-32, but Mooney answered to lead 43-32 after three sessions.
Period four was much the same. Each time Springfield made a run, Mooney answered. Springfield came within three points three times, but could get no closer.
"We knew Springfield would make a run, and they did," Mooney coach Steve Leslie said. "It was big for us that we had the lead."
Judy is standout
In the nightcap, it was all Judy, whose 29 points were 12 more than the rest of his team combined.
Judy thrice gave Lisbon (8-13) the lead late, including his game winner with 10 seconds left.
Three point shots from Judy and Steve Tsilimos put Lisbon on top 19-7 after one and when Judy scored at 2:28 of the half, Lisbon was up 25-15.
Girard dug in, however, to finish the second period with a 7-0 run which made the intermission count 25-22.
Girard (3-18) had four leads , three in the last 2:53 and one on a fielder by David Culp at 10 seconds but Judy as he did all night had the answer one last time.
"We're the most deceiving team ever," Lisbon coach Matt Cashdollar said. "We lost so many close games this year that I knew one would bounce our way.
"We always stay together and battle to the end."