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Royale Ewing and Elijah Watson are quite the dynamic duo for St. Patrick.
The two South Siders have been playing together since eighth grade when they attended Beasley Academic Center and are always on the same wave length.
That was apparent on Wednesday night as the two combined to score 42 points to lead the Shamrocks past Maine West 62-47 in the St. Patrick Regional semifinals.
“We play off each other and for each other,” said Watson, who finished with 18 points. “We know each other so well and don’t really have to talk much on the court.”
“It’s all eye contact,” added Ewing, who had a game-high 24 points. “I think all the time we spent playing with each other since eighth grade has set up this conglomerate.”
The first quarter was fast and furious for both teams as St. Pat’s (18-9) took a 20-18 lead into the second quarter.
The Shamrocks were on the verge of opening a huge lead in the second as a pair of buckets by both Keith Langston and Michael Hoffman extended St. Pat’s lead to 28-18. Back-to-back baskets from Matt Acevedo and Joel Ferraren pulled Maine West (13-15) within 28-22 but Elijah Watson buried a three-pointer at the buzzer to give the Shamrocks a 31-22 lead at the break.
Neither team could put together a sustained run in the third quarter and the end result was St. Pat’s headed to the fourth quarter with a 47-36 advantage.
The Warriors tried to hang around but back-to-back baskets from Isaac Moore and Ewing, followed by a three-ball by Luis Gallego effectively ended it as the Shamrocks extended their lead to 56-38 with 4:35 to play.
“They disrupted us, got in the lanes and got steals,” said Joel Ferraren, who scored 10 points for Maine West. “We knew they get most of their points in transition and that’s what happened tonight. We didn’t hustle back and get stops on defense.”
Jamal Sherman also scored 10 points for the Warriors.