Since the history between the two schools is limited, it's foolish to think that the basketball games between Bishop Grimes and Bishop Ludden can amount to a "Holy War" on par with that the Gaelic Knights once had with Chrsitian Brothers Academy.
Still, there was no denying the importance of the Cobras' encounter with the Gaelic Knights on Wednesday night in Geddes. Grimes was 3-0, Ludden 4-0, and whoever won would lead the OHSL Liberty division going into 2011.
Grimes had plenty of good early moments, and battled all the way to the final buzzer - but still lost a 56-54 decision to the Gaelic Knights.
Mike Stone led both sides with 19 points, he only made a single 3-pointer in the second half and fouled out in the closing minutes, unable to help the Cobras in its late comeback attempt.
Stone had dazzled in the game's opening minute, hitting a baseline jumper off the glass, sinking another jump shot after a nifty crossover dribble and, to cap it off, making a steal and lay-up to make it 6-0 before Ludden even got a point.
Within two minutes, though, Ludden was out in front thanks to its own 7-0 run, and freshman Dan Kaigler powered them through the rest of the first half, getting 11 of his 17 points on everything from drives to the basket to a pulled-up 3-pointer. That helped the Gaelic Knights take a 28-23 lead to the break.
Ludden aimed to limit Stone's possessions, and while that worked in the third quarter, Grimes still used baskets from Gai Ater (who finished with 12 points) and Connor Sohl (who added 10 points) to inch ahead 36-35 late in the period.
Again, the Gaelic Knights would answer. First, Tyler Young hit on back-to-back possessions, pushing Ludden in front 39-36. Then Matt Rogers chimed in with his own pair of baskets just before the period ended, and suddenly the Cobras were down 43-36.