Defending City Champs Cardinal Hayes powered their way to a muscle-flexing 85-69 win over heavyweight rival Archbishop Stepinac to win the CHSAA Archdiocese title in the Bronx on Saturday.
Elijah Moore scored 20 of his game-high 31 points in the first half, as the Cardinals raced out of the gate to open the game on a 10-2 run. Hayes looked like they might put the game out of reach early after an alley-oop dunk by Steven Solano and a 3-pointer by Moore gave the Cardinals a 22-7 lead with 1:51 left in the first, but Stepinac managed to regroup after a timeout. The Crusaders not only climbed back into it, but they took a 37-35 lead after 3-pointers by Howard Eisley Jr. and Jasiah Jervis and a pair of free throws by Braylan Ritvo.
Hayes regained a two point advantage at the half, and the Cardinals pulled ahead by double digits again at 55-45 on a 3-pointer by Jaiden Williams with 2:05 in the third. Moore beat the third-quarter horn with one of his six triples, and Hayes took a comfortable 62-50 lead into the fourth.
Moore's one-handed dunk stretched the margin to 72-53 with 6:08 left, and the Cardinals coasted from there.
Ian Jackson scored 18 points and Solano added 11 for Hayes.
Boogie Fland finished with 22 points for Stepinac, including five 3-pointers.
Video highlights (added on 2.26.23)