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Curtin Call
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    Colin Curtin is a manager for St. Joseph's Prep basketball team, and is back to report on the Hawks.
    You may reach Colin at Prepper05@aol.com.

    Please offer your support. Thank you!!

Neumann-Goretti 57, SJ Prep 44
          This season was not supposed to end like this. According to some people we were supposed to not make the playoffs. Our season should have ended at the end of the Catholic League regular season, right?  I mean, since the beginning of the year we have been hearing critics saying that we didn’t have the guard play like we did the past two years. They had said if you shut Redding down, the Prep is done.  The Prep proved everyone wrong as they marched to the Catholic League Championship game, and came up a bit short.  But this team accomplished a 25-3 overall record and a 13-1 record in the Southern Division sharing the crown with Neumann-Goretti.  Tonight at Tom Gola Arena Neumann-Goretti played a perfect game, making key shots, getting great defensive stands, and taking advantage of the Prep’s missed opportunities.  Neumann-Goretti outworked the Prep in every aspect of the game.  The game, which was packed, witnessed a Willis Reed-like moment in the beginning of the game.  Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke, who was not supposed to play due to a broken left wrist, came running out of the locker-room about a minute after the other players went out.  As he approached the court the Prep fans grew aware of his presence and some gave him a standing ovation.  This was a huge lift for this team, seeing its emotional leader literally play the championship game with one arm.  He finished 0-4 from the field, but added 4 rebounds and 1 assist.  Corey will not be remembered by this game, but rather as the best defender in the Catholic League, his 2nd Team All Catholic Selection, his seven trey performance against Abington Friends, and for all the charges he drew throughout his Prep career.  He will not leave the Prep as a loser, but as a tough kid who left everything on the floor game in and game out.  His running mate Joe Fox went 1-5 for 2 points and 3 assists.  Going into the season Joe Fox was supposed to be an average guard at best, not like ex-point guard Chris Clark.  Joe, like this team, proved everyone wrong. He was selected as a 2nd Team All-Catholic, earned a MVP award against Springfield Delco, and has controlled this team throughout the season.  He will be remembered as an all-around Catholic League Point Guard, backing down from no one. Jrs. Reggie Redding and Dave Stefanski basically provided all the offense for the Prep. WG Dave Stefanski shot 4-8 for 10 points 1 rebound and 1 assist.  He has been a great shooter all year, probably the best shooter in the Catholic League South.  Dave will be a key part of next year's team as they make a move to regain their title.  Reggie Redding shot 9-21 for 23 points and 9 rebounds.  The Prep’s performance tonight was very flat with the exception of these two. They really couldn’t get on a run at all during the game, because of the Saints great defense.   Overall the Prep proved many people wrong this year, and also had fun doing it.
         Stat of the Game: The Prep was out-rebounded 28-19
          Shout-outs:  My first shout out is going to Joe Fox, Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke, Sean Barker and Ned Dillon, who are all seniors on the team.  My second is going to Ted Silary for giving me the opportunity to write for 2 years.  My Third is going to the Whole Prep Coaching Staff.  And finally to all the Curtin Call fans, thanks for all your support throughout the season.  I will be attending Niagara University where I will continue to Manage up there, and don’t be surprised if they upset some team in the first round in the NCAA Tourney.

SJ Prep 63, Dougherty 48
          1 point, was just something someone could achieve in a game. 1 point, could be made by hitting 1 foul shot. 1 point, is no longer what 1 point was minutes, weeks, or even years ago. 1 point, has changed ever since Sean Barker hit one foul shot. 1 point, is now 1 point closer to 1,000. 1 point is an accomplishment. It is no longer called 1 point, but rather Sean Barker.  In his nearly 2 minutes of action the final line in the stat book was 0-2 from the field 1-2 from the line for 1 point.  Sean, who was inactive ever since the spring of sophomore year, finally got his chance and once he came off the bench the party began.  Parents, students, and players rose to their feet as Barker laced up the shoes and took off his warmups.   Not to mention his move that got him to the foul line, I mean I didn’t know who had a torn meniscus, Barker or the guy who was covering him.  Barker hit him with a Reggie Miller like pump and drove to hoop where he officially got his first point.  After the game Bark had a press conference in the locker-room which featured the Washington Post, USA Today, the Philadelphia Daily News, and the New York Post (smile). He opened up by saying “I consider myself the luckiest man in the world." One reporter had asked him if he got any practice time with the team, and Sean responded, “Practice? Practice? Not a game. Not a GAME. But Practice?! I don’t need Practice!!”  As the press conference concluded Barker announced his retirement after the year was over.  He has waited a long time for this moment and now he’s got it and no one can take that away from him.  One other note, while the press conference was going on Barker haters stood in the back yelling “We hate Barker." Barker, congratulations you get my MVP tonight.  He has been through a lot, but it alls pays off with the night he had tonight. MY MAN!
          There was a gamed played tonight along with all the other special events that went on tonight.  Cardinal Dougherty and the Prep matched up for the 3rd straight year in the playoffs with the Prep winning both and trying to keep building on that.  The Cardinals posed no threat to the Prep as the Hawks were scoring early and often as they jumped on Dougherty with a 22-6 lead at the end of the first.  Much of that success came from Freshman Forward Larry Loughery as he shot 5-9 from the field for 13 points and 6 rebounds.   He is coming alive and is playing very strong, and what a time to step up his game.  Throughout the season Loughery has been very consisted with his rebounds, but the offense was sometimes absent, but tonight was his coming-out party as he was pulling rebounds and making key baskets.  Tonight we won, Sean gets in the game, and everything is all good, right? No, absolutely not.  Late in the 4th quarter with about 3 minutes to play, Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke went in for a layup. As he went up, it got blocked and Corey hit the floor hard.  Upon hitting the floor he landed right on his wrist, he was taken to the hospital for X-Rays, I would ask everyone, Prep fan or not, to pray for him.  You never want to see this happen to a player especially one who is having a great season.  Corey, stay strong, we are all behind you, and our prayers go out to you.
          Joe Fox had another solid game in controlling the tempo against the fast-paced Cardinals.  He shot 2-8 from the field for 6 points 2 steals and 2 rebounds.  These numbers might not be impressive, but he truly controlled the tempo dishing when he needed to dish and shot when he had the open J.  Most of his passes were to Jr. Reggie Redding, who shot 7-14 from the field for 21 points 6 assists and 12 rebounds.  I am speechless nothing more can be said about Reggie.  He is a freak of nature, and God I thank you for putting Reggie together the way you did.
          Stat of the Game: Sean Barker has a career 3 points with the Prep varsity. We have 4 games left and he is only 1,486 points away from breaking the Prep’s scoring records.  In these last 4 games Sean needs to average 371.5 points a game, and I have seen crazier things happen.  ADVANTAGE BARKER.
          Shoutouts:  My first is going to a Fairfield grad and I won’t hold that against him, Mr. Brian McCloskey, a big time Prep fan who resides in the admissions office during the day.  My second is going to 1st-year camera man Mike Oberlies.  My third is going to the future of the program: Pat Curtin, Kyle Sweeny, Connor McDevitt, and Brendan Smith.  My fourth is going to Mr. Joe Coyle, English teacher at the Prep, who claims to be the best soccer player, lacrosse player, and basketball player in the world.  My fifth and final is going to Sean Barker. You've got to feel good for this kid.

FEB. 26
SJ Prep 60, West Catholic 47
          This game was the most boring game in the history of the Catholic League Playoffs, but a win is a win especially in the playoffs.  This game featured dropped passes, missed layups, and shots hitting the side of the backboard, and I promise you this wasn’t a St. Matt's CYO game.  Just before the game Coach Ludlow came up to me and said, “I saw your prediction.” As I heard that I slid under the table fearing my life trying to avoid Sergeant Slaughter.  (I’m only kidding. Coach Ludlow is probably the most respected coach in the Catholic League and he deserved the Coach of the Year award.)  Ludlow had his team very prepared going into the game Saturday Night.  He contained the Prep early, and had two buzzer-beaters -- by Derrell Hand in the first quarter and Eric Brennan in the second quarter -- to go into the locker room with only a 4-point deficit (24-20).  In the locker room, Speedy’s message for the team was to play their game and not West Catholic’s. He stressed on concentrating on their layups and playing good defense.  In the beginning of the 2nd half the Prep got a boost from Joe Fox, getting his first playoff start, as he connected for 12 2nd-half points on 3-7 shooting from the field 4-4 from the line, and also chipped in for 2 assists.  Fox is the leader of this team, and as far as he goes the Prep will go, and with this 2nd half explosion he helped the Prep put the Burrs away and maintain a 60-47 victory.  Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke did not have an impressive offensive game, but did his part on the defensive end to contribute to the win.  He shot 2-6 from the field for 5 points 2 assists and 3 rebounds.
          What more can be said about Jr. forward Reggie Redding, he again proved to everyone how nasty he is.  He shot 6-12 for 19 points 4 assists 2 steals and 15 rebounds.   He scores like Carmelo Anthony grabs rebounds like Ben Wallace and has the heart of Brian Cardinal, and not to mention he sees the court like Keyon Dooling.  Reggie is the MVP of the South and in the opening round game he let his game talk and prove his haters wrong.

          Stat of the Game: The Prep out rebounded the Burrs 37-28.
          Shoutouts:  My first is going to Prep Basketball Alums that were present tonight Mike Kearney, Paul Lynch, Chris Clark, Pat O’Toole, and Antoine Joseph.  My second is going Brian Carlin, yes the La Salle basketball player, who took over the Prep student section. He was also second in voting for the best player on the worst team.  My last is going to Matt Griffin, who warmed up for the first time since he broke his hand and nose in the same game.
            Sean Barker Injury Report:  After his surgery Sean has been jumping through the roof, I saw him in practice the other day dunking on Kevin Fox, and I asked, “Where you get hops like that”, and he responded “Dee Brown donated his meniscus to me."  I had also asked him the chances of throwing one down in the playoff, and Sean just walked away and drove away in his Jeep Wrangler.  He’s going Hollywood on us. (smile)

FEB. 24
Playoff Preview
Saturday 6
Roman Catholic vs. Neumann-Goretti
          Upset Alert!  Upset Alert!  Upset Alert!   As N-G and SJ Prep fought for first place in the Southern Division, many people forgot about the Cahillites.  In the last 5 games Bobby Jordan has averaged 16 points and he has something to prove to the whole Catholic League.  If Roman can control the tempo and take away the drive and penetration by Scoop and D.J. they will win their first playoff game in 5 years.
BACKCOURT:  Advantage N-G

FRONTCOURT:  Advantage Roman Catholic
BENCH PLAYERS:  Advantage Roman Catholic
OVERALL:  Advantage Roman Catholic
FINAL SCORE:  Roman 52  N-G 46
Saturday 8

West Catholic vs. SJ Prep
          After doing the improbable and beating N-G, then winning the coin toss, the Prep goes into the playoffs on a high.  Reggie Redding is poised to lead this team to the promised land, but first the Burrs of West Catholic stand in his way.  The threesome of Hand, Mayo, and Askew is very dangerous.  They all are inside and outside threats, but will they be able to stop the Prep’s firepower?
BACKCOURT:  Advantage Prep

FRONTCOURT:  Advantage West Catholic
BENCH PLAYERS: Advantage Prep
COACHING:  Advantage Prep
OVERALL:  Advantage Prep
FINAL SCORE:  SJ Prep  45  West Catholic 33
Sunday 6:15

Dougherty vs. Ryan
          Dougherty is riding a 6 game win streak into the playoffs with wins over #1 seed Wood, #4 seed Judge, and #3 seed Ryan.  Dougherty had taken the season series from Ryan, but it is very hard to beat a team 3 times.  To advance and maybe play the Prep for the 3rd straight year they will need good play on the defensive end and offensive end by Roberto Townsend and Josh Martin.  Entering the playoff Bernie Rogers' club has been very good running there Princeton offense, and getting great play down the stretch with big man Keith Hudgeons and Joe Zeglinski.  In order to win this game Ryan will have to jump in front early and run through their sets to create good shot opportunities.
BACKCOURT:  Advantage Dougherty
FRONTCOURT:  Advantage Ryan
BENCH PLAYERS:  Advantage Dougherty
COACHING: Advantage Ryan
FINAL SCORE:  Dougherty 45    Ryan 49
Sunday 8:15

Wood vs. Father Judge
          With Judge splitting the season series, this makes for a difficult game if Wood doesn’t bring their A game.  Last year Wood finally got the monkey off their back and won their first playoff game, and nearly beat Dougherty last year.  Now they are in the shoes of Dougherty last year, they won the Northern Division, and now play the winner of the play-in game (Judge).  The tandem of Filer and Spadafora needs to play smart basketball in order for Wood to capture the victory, but if Judge can establish the three ball early with Palantino and Taggert then Wood could be in trouble.
BACKCOURT:  Advantage Wood

FRONTCOURT: Advantage Wood
BENCH PLAYERS: Advantage Wood
COACHING: Up to the readers (I have family on one side.)
OVERALL:  Advantage Wood
FINAL SCORE:  Wood 60  Father Judge 48

FEB. 20
SJ Prep 55, Neumann-Goretti 53
          Ever since David slain Goliath, there have been upsets happening every day in every sport.  Today the Saints entered the Prep ranked 12th in the nation in USA Today, ranked 1st in the state, and 1st in Southeastern Pennsylvania, and had beat the Prep earlier in the year by 7.  This was a must win for the Prep if they wanted to force a coin toss for first place in the South for purposes of the Catholic League Playoffs.  This game featured probably five high D-1 players in Reggie Redding, Earl Pettis, Antonio Jardine, D.J. Rivera, and Richard Jackson.   Four out of the Five players belonged to the Saints, and people are still asking that question, “How did they beat them?" Well, coming into the season no one gave the Prep any credit, because they had only one starter returning in Reggie Redding, and:
This win was for everyone who counted us out.

This win was for everyone who said this was a rebuilding year.
This win was for all the seniors not only the basketball seniors.
This win was for all the Joe Fox haters.
   Today was Senior Day at the Prep, and what a Senior Day for Joe Fox.  In the beginning of the year everyone questioned Joe Fox’s ability to star at the point after the departure of Chris Clark.  Well, in front of a capacity crowd Joe Fox outplayed both D.J. Rivera and Antonio Jardine, two future stars.  Fox shot 6-11 from the field 5-6 from the line for 20 points 1 rebound and 2 assists.  He played his best game of the year today, and what a day to do it.  The 12th team in the nation, 1st team in Pennsylvania, and 1st team in Southeastern Pennsylvania was slain today.  D.J. Rivera shot 2-12 for 4 points 6 rebounds and 3 steals, and was shut down by defensive stopper Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke.  This kid has nasty skills on D and when he guards someone he shuts them down, and today was a great example.   D.J. was having fits all day not being able to drive to the hoop and get the shot he wanted.  The Kelly Fieldhouse was rocking all game, and in the first 2 minutes in the fourth quarter it got even louder as Dave Stefanski knocked down a three-pointer from the top of the key, and then next possession down gave a little crossover move on Earl Pettis and hit a foul line extended jumper to extend the lead to 7.
   Reggie Redding had another amazing game and really picked up the Prep early in the first quarter as he scored the Prep’s first 10 points.  He finished with 16 at the half, and had a game-high 26. He shot 9-14 from the field 6-8 from the line and had 7 rebounds 2 assists and 2 steals.  What more can you say about Redding? He knows when to shot and when to pass, and more important he knows when to step up his game.  Coming out of the locker room, Redding had a Jordan-like moment.  After Speedy was done talking to the team, Redding threw up twice in the locker room but that didn’t stop him as he converted 10 second half points and made a 2 point basket with 20 seconds left to break the tie.
    Stat of the Game: With that win that was the Prep fourth Straight Southern Division Title, and Speedy Morris’ 12th Southern Division Title in 18 years in the Catholic League. (8 with Roman and 4 with the Prep).
   Celebrity Sightings: Phil Martelli, Fran Dunphy, Froggy, Billy Hahn, Chris Clark, and John Griffin.
   Shoutouts:  My first is going to the Fans of The Prep; they were amazing today and still and the best in the Catholic League.  My second is going to Seniors Pat Bradley and Joe Gorman, who hit a half court shot for 4 weeks of free lunch, My third is going to my dad Jim Curtin who after the game brought my family and I out to Mace’s Crossing to celebrate the win and Senior Day.  And my last is going to the Coin Flip Gods so that they give Speedy the knowledge to pick the right side.

FEB. 18
SJ Prep 59, Carroll 35
          First off much praise and thanks needs to be placed on a player that was not a difference in the game, only played 22 seconds, and has a mouth that's bigger than his game.  Thank you Mike Logue, number 22 on Carroll’s basketball team, for getting the Prep pumped up and ready to play Carroll.  Your quote from Thursday night was hanging in the halls of the Prep, and congrats, Mike, you are now a star.  (Note from Ted: There appears to be controversy about whether the comments on a message board were made by Mike or someone imitating Mike. Whatever the truth is, the comments served to fire up the Prep.) Before the much anticipated game between the Hawks and the Saints, the Prep needed to get past the Patriots of Archbishop John Carroll.  Knowing that this game was on CN8 the Prep came out to prove that this hurdle was a mere speed bump.  The Patriots had a huge crowd behind them, but the Prep fans had the last laugh at the end as they mocked the Carroll fans.  The Prep was anchored by Sr. guard Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke as he shot 5-7 from the field for 14 points 1 assist 2 steals and 4 rebounds. Once again he is scoring at will and playing great defense.  Don’t sleep on Corey’s ability to put the ball in the hoop, because his play on offense is very underrated.  Joe Fox, who had a strong defensive game, chipped in with 6 points, and helped the Prep control the tempo of the game.  Coming off the bench Oscar Griffin went 3-6 from the field for 6 points 2 blocks and 5 rebounds.  His game is getting better and better, and he continues to work hard in practice and in games. Also, jr. G Dave Stefanski, feared to be lost for the season (knee injury) at this time last week, has now been cleared to keep playing.
          Let’s play a game: Which player do these stats belong to? Six-for-14 from the field for 22 points along with 3 assists, 3 steals and 13 rebounds.  You don’t know? OK, I’ll tell you its Reggie Redding, the MVP of the game.  He came into the game establishing his inside game and outside game.  He was able to draw double-teams in the post only to kick it out for a three pointer.  Reggie is more than a one-dimensional player, as he passes, rebounds and plays defense? What more can you ask for in a player?
            Stat of the Game: This is not a stat, but a cheer.  Late in the game when Carroll was down 20 the Carroll students chanted, “We got girls!". Upon hearing that, the Prep chanted back, “We got playoffs”.  ADVANTAGE, PREP FANS.
           Shoutouts- My first is going to Coach Joe Donahue, head statman, who provides me with the wonderful information for this website. He is my stat man, not to mention my main man, “Book it, Dano." My second is going to the JV team, especially Pat Krimm.   My third and final is going to the fans that came out. We need you Sunday for the best and biggest game of the year.

FEB. 13
SJ Prep 61, O'Hara 43
          After coming off a rather boring game against Bonner, the Prep proved that they could play without WG Dave Stefanski.  Cardinal O’Hara was coming off a tough home loss against the Burrs, but they could see the light at the end off the tunnel if they could knock off the Hawks.  But as the game began I didn’t know what happened to O’Hara, this was the same team that played the Hawks tough at the Lion’s Den, but today they had no effort.  In the word of Tom “Puck” McKenna, “They startin' to pack it in, boy," and after that loss it seemed that all the energy had been drained from the team.  This was a rather quiet atmosphere which consisted of mostly players' parents and grandparents, and that was about it.  The Crispino Crew continued to show their support, but the parent to student ratio was probably 15 to 1.
            The Prep came out firing behind Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke who shot 4 for 10 from the field for 10 points 3 assists and 6 rebounds.  Many people have been questioning Corey’s offensive ability, they know he can play defense, but can he put the ball in the hoop?  Corey through the past couple of games has been scoring at will, taking his man off the dribble or spotting for a trey.  He is only getting stronger on O as the most important part of the season comes up.  Joe Fox, probably one of the best if not the best role player in the league, had another solid game shooting 3 for 4 for 7 points and 3 assists.  He is spreading the ball out evenly throughout the team and if he has the shot he usually cans it.  Fr Oscar Griffin, who is getting more time because of Stefanski’s injury, chipped in off the bench for 7 points, 2 assists and 4 rebounds.  Oscar still has a lot to learn about this program, but once he grasps the idea of it, he will become such a nasty player. The name Rasual Butler comes to mind when I think of "Scar."
          Believe it or not Reggie Redding posted another 20 point performance (yawn).  Not only did he score 20 plus, but he outscored the whole O’Hara team at halftime as Reggie posted 19 at the break.  Overall he shot 9 for 12 for 23 points 2 assists 2 steals and 7 rebounds.  His smooth play helped the Prep get by O’Hara, and live to play another game.
          Stat of the Game: The Prep had 16 assists to O’Hara’s 5.
          For my ShoutOut . . . it is going to the fans, and I need to say this weekend is going to be crazy starting with Archbishop Carroll, and all year I hear how rowdy these Carroll fans are, so I challenge the Prep Fans to not only show up at Carroll, but take over that gym.  Show the CL what the Prep fans are all about, and dominate these Carroll fans!

JAN. 30
SJ Prep 61, K-K 26
          Joe Fox 12, K-K 9. That was the score at halftime. Enough said.  K-K fans chanted, “It’s all over” in the fourth quarter with six minutes to play. WORST FANS EVER (smile).

JAN. 28
SJ Prep 59, Roman 51
          Entering the game there had been some bad-mouthing between the Prep fans and Roman's fans, on which school had the better fans.  Well both student bodies showed up and the Roman fans came into the Prep chanting, “This is our house.”  As the Prep came out to start their pre-game warm-ups Roman Fans kept chanting, “Speedy, Speedy, Speedy”.  Upon hearing this Speedy went over to the Roman Section and had a nice 2-minute conversation with the faithful.  All these emotions were all before the game and once the ball was throw up all the emotions spilled onto the floor.
          Early in the game Roman sprinted to a 15 to 8 run led by Malik Perry who had 8 points, but after the first quarter the Prep took control of the game and never looked back.  They were once again anchored by the strong backcourt of Corey O’Rourke and Joe Fox.   These two are like thunder and lightning, one willing to bring defensive pressure on whoever whenever, and the other willing to dish the ball always finding the open man, and occasionally hitting smooth shots inside and out.  Today Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke had 9 points and took many key charges to swing the momentum late in the second half (that pushes him in double digits in charges this year).  While Corey makes the plays on defense Joe Fox picks it up from there on the offensive end.  He was definitely not selfish today he was willing to pass not only to Redding, but also to other key players.  He has confidence in all his players to knock down shots when he delivers then the rock.  Joe chipped in 7 points to help the Prep knock off Roman.
          Yet again Reggie Redding put together another tremendous performance in a game the Prep needed.  After the N-G the Prep needed to bounce back and they did behind the junior star.  He had 26 points, and with this production he gets the MVP of the game.

          Stat of the Game: After the first quarter the Prep went on a 51-36 run.
         Shout-out: Only got one and it is going to all the Prep fans, by far the best in the Catholic League.

JAN. 25
Neumann-Goretti 47, SJ Prep 40
          The Rumble in the Jungle, Part Two. The last time the Prep traveled to South Philly was the first game in the Catholic League last year, where the Prep hit shot after shot to beat Neumann in three overtimes.  That was a long time ago and a lot of things have changed; the school is now co-ed, they are no longer the Pirates, and three stars are emerging.  With all these changes it still felt like a regular Prep vs. Neumann matchup.  This was an early matchup of two undefeated teams, who came in 6-0 respectively; something had to give.   The game started out as a fast-paced game with a little controversy.  Early in the game Reggie Redding had accused Derrick Rivera of “ball-tapping” him.  Webster defines that phrase as a quick hit to the groin area with one's hands.  This action just started to fuel the coaching staff of the Prep, and as the Prep took their first timeout Speedy yelled to ref Mike Jackson, “Watch the low blows." After hearing that N-G coach Carl Arrigale came to center court and yelled over something to Speedy, and Speedy replied by saying, “Stop playing dirty." This then started a verbal fight between the Neumann coaching staff and the Prep’s.  The fight was early, and from there on out you could tell there was a lot of emotion throughout the game from both the players and coaches.
         The game featured three of the best juniors in the league in Reggie Redding, Derrick Rivera, and Earl Pettis.  Once again the bulk of the Prep’s scoring came from the talented junior, who shot 7 for 20 from the field for 20 points and 12 rebounds.  He was working inside and outside all night, but the trio of Earl, DJ, and Antonio "Scoop" Jardine was just too much.   Pettis, who picked up two fouls early in the first quarter, did not let that affect him as he went 5 for 12 for 14 points and 6 rebounds.  His backcourt duo shot a combined 8 for 22 for 25 points, 10 rebounds and 3 assists (DJ shot 5-8 for 13 points 4 rebounds and 2 assists, and Scoop shot 3-14 for 12 points 6 rebounds and an assists).   The Prep also got scoring from Joe Fox, who shot 4-8 for 10 points.  This was a rather cold game for Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke, but he once again did his part in other areas,  collecting 8 rebounds and also dishing out 6 assists.
          Conor Kennedy, a very unusual player, had the game of his life starting in front of suspended Dave Burton.  Kennedy who did not have a great scoring night, is my MVP.  He put defensive locks on PG Joe Fox throughout the game, and came up with two huge offensive rebounds.  He is an underdog type of kid, never really seen because of the type of talent that N-G has, but tonight he was the brightest star in South Philly after he converted a two-point bucket to put the game out of reach.
          Stat of the Game: N-G out rebounded the Prep 30 to 24.
          Shout Outs: My first is going to Mike Kearney, who was just awarded freshman of the week in track for Fordham.   Next game is Friday as Roman visits Prep, and BUBBA don’t even try to take over the Prep.

JAN. 16
My Opinion of the CL's Top 25 Players
1. Reggie Redding (SJP)
2. DJ Rivera (N-G)
3. Earl Pettis (N-G)
4. Malik Perry (Roman)
5. Antonio Jardine (N-G)
6. Dave Burton (N-G)
7. Matt Spadafora (Wood)
8. Jeff Jones (Bonner)
9. Joe Zeglinski (Ryan)
10. Corey O'Rourke (SJP)
11. Joe Fox (SJP)
12. Bobby Jordan (Roman)
13. Nate Edwards (North)
14. Andrew Pomager (North)
15. Ray Sims (Roman)
16. Eugene Adams (Carroll)
17. Corey Filer (Wood)
18. Rick Jackson (N-G)
19. Anthony Watson (Carroll)
20. Derrick Graff (Bonner)
21. Pat Kirby (O'Hara)
22. Rob Pearson (Wood)
23. Larry Loughery (SJP)
24. Matt Burns (C-E)
25. Bill Lally (Roman)

JAN. 14
SJ Prep 66, Bonner 55 (2 OTs)
     This game had all the makings to be on ESPN Classics as an Instant Classic as the Friars and the Hawks put on a nail biting performance.  When you only allow 3 players to score in a basketball game you have to like your chances on winning and winning big.  Maybe against another team, but not Bonner. Derrick Graff and Jeff Jones put on a show, and I have to say an impressive show.  Those two combined for 52 of their team's 55 points and nearly -- and I do mean nearly -- brought home the victory.  Graff, who scored 34, was just dominating inside and outside, hitting a NBA JAM-like jumper as time expired at the end of the third quarter to make the game deadlocked at 40-40.  Due to foul trouble Graff had to sit early in the fourth quarter for about 3 minutes.  As he went out you could hear people in the crowd saying, “Thank God.” With him going out, people thought that the Prep would take over, but Jeff Jones caught fire.   He finished with 18, and when Graff was out Jones was hitting treys off of screens, and they were all contested.  This was a very playoff-like atmosphere, the fans were crazy and the players were hyped from the start.
     Unlike Bonner, the Prep had numerous players that scored including 4 out of the 5 starters scoring in double-digits.  It all started with the play of Reggie Redding, who shot 8-20 from the field for 27 points 4 assists and 7 rebounds.  Reggie’s 27 points were a very very quiet 27 compared to the product that came from Jeff Jones and Derrick Graff.  Redding, only a Jr., has played so well, not afraid to take that big shot to propel the Prep for the win.  He hit a 1-and-1 with about 53 seconds left in the fourth quarter to tie the game, what can I say the man has got ice in his veins.  Larry “The Future” Loughery had his hands full all night covering Graff, but was still able to get a double-double on 3-7 shooting from the field for 10 points and 12 rebounds.  Loughery has showed not only the Prep but also the whole league that he is the real thing, The Truth.  Dave “The Shot” Stefanski was shooting with a lot of confidence tonight, draining almost everything he put up.  He shot 4-9 for 13 points 2 assists and 2 rebounds.  Tonight Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke hurt his ankle in the first half and could barely walk during halftime.  Everyone was concerned, but Hollywood didn’t want to sit because he is Hollywood.  Corey was hurting all second half, but put on a defensive show as he put locks on Jeff Jones, forcing some key late turnovers.  Corey finished with 2 points 4 assists and 5 rebounds.
    Zero, love, zip, zilch, lets count how many turnovers PG Joe Fox had --- oh, I can’t because he had none.   Zero turnovers whether in high school, college, or NBA is a huge accomplishment especially for a PG, who played every minute in the game.  Joe shot 5-13 for 14 points 3 assists and 3 rebounds.  Joe, who loves the spotlight, hit a HUGE trey to open up the second OT.  After sinking it the Prep got momentum and ran away with the game.  Joe continues to shock some people and after tonight he should get much praise.  MVP to Joe Fox, YES SIR.
    Stat of the Game: The Prep out-rebounded Bonner 35 to 28.
   Shout-out: My first is going to Mike Boyle, who also scored 14 points in the game tonight without even going onto the court (there was a mistake in the boxscore printed in The Inquirer). My second is going to the Bonner Student Session; they were hyped all game. And my third is going to Bobby Jordan, a fan of the Curtin Call; Bob keep your head up and just play your game.

JAN. 9
SJ Prep 54, West Catholic 42
          West Catholic was coming into the Prep with an 8-6 record and 1-1 in the Catholic League South.  The Prep did not treat them as an 8-6 team but rather a 14-0 West Catholic team.  Going into the game they knew this was going to be like a backyard brawl.  The Burrs were coming in after a win at Archbishop Carroll and had been playing very hard and tough.  This is a team that has a lot of talent and teams in the Catholic League can not sleep on this team.  A good example is when they played N-G, if they made their foul shots and layups, they would have shocked the world.  The Burrs came into the game anchored by Chris Mayo and Derrell Hand, a duo that has the ability to go inside and outside and score 10-15 points each.  The Prep sprinted off to a 20-8 first quarter lead led by Dave Stefanski with 9 points; he shot 4-6 for a total of 12 points.  Dave, who was rather quiet in the past games, broke out of his slump by putting on a great shooting display.
The MVP’s again are going to the “Three Headed Monster”.  Once again the three all scored in double digits led by the Floor General, PG Joe Fox.  Joe shot 4-9 for 11 points, 2 assists and 2 steals.  He is once again finding a way to will this team to win.   Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke shot 3-9 from the floor and 4-4 from the line for 11 points 1 assist 3 steals and 8 rebounds.  This is a dangerous guard combo in the Southern Division, and they are only going to get better as the season goes on.  Reggie “Melo” Redding had a solid all-around game shooting 3-11 from the field and 5-8 from the foul line for 11 points 3 assists 2 blocked shots and 6 rebounds.  This is the third consecutive game that all three have been in double digits.  Larry “The Future” Loughery had 6 points and 6 rebounds, and Mike Lombardi came off the bench to chip in 3 points and 3 rebounds.
          Stat of the Game:   West outscored the Prep in the second half 22-16.  They were led by Derrell Hand, who scored 16 points and showed his ability to shoot from inside and outside.
         Shout-outs:  Well my first is going to two CYO teams that will be throwing down Thursday night at Bonner, St. Bernadette’s vs. St. Andrew’s.  My second is going to The Basketball Wizard, Mrs. Funston.  And my last is going to bowling superstar Jim Bogan.  Bowling experts compare him to a young Pete Weber.

JAN. 7
SJ Prep 67, Kennedy-Kenrick 36
          This was the Catholic League home opener for the Hawks as they hosted the much improved Wolverines of K-K.  Coming off a huge win on Monday night the Prep got a break today.  Kenrick came out with a lot of energy and held the Hawks to 17 points in the first quarter.  It stood 17-9 at the beginning of the second quarter, when the Prep started to heat up.  They went on a 19-6 run to close out the half with a score of 36-15.  The Hawks got a boost from there key bench players, Mike Lombardi, James Oberlies, and Mike McCauley.  They shot 7-11 for 14 points and 6 boards; they started the surge early in the second quarter.
         Again the Prep’s guards played another solid game, led by the point guard Joe Fox.  He shot 6 for 8 for 13 points, while Corey “Hollywood/Borderline Franchise Player” O’Rourke shot 5 for 12 for 11 points in addition to 4 assists 3 steals and 7 rebounds.  This duo is continually opening eyes all over the Catholic League.  While they produce game in and game out, Reggie Redding puts on a show.  He shot 5 for 12 for 14 points, and also had 2 assists 5 steals and 7 rebounds.   This “Three Headed Monster” has been very fun to watch and today all three were in double digits in points.  Redding, in his second year starting, has helped the two guards become great players in the Catholic League, and this game showed it.  That is why I am giving the MVP to all three.
          Stat of the Game: The Prep forced 26 turnovers on the Wolverines.

          I have to say though, Kenrick is a lot -- and I mean a LOT -- better than last year, and their coach Mike Fink shows a lot of energy towards his team, and his team responds.  Kenrick was led by Tim Bowman with 12 points.
          Shout-outs- My first is going to my mom, Camille Curtin, who, after the game threw a surprise birthday party for me.   My second is going to All-Star CYO player Tim Klarich out of St. Matt’s.  And my last is going to Kevin Fox, Charlie Schrier, Matt Beck, Matt Griffin, and Kevin Gallagher, who all saw a lot of playing time.

JAN. 4
SJ Prep 57, Roman 50
          “Don’t give up. Don't ever give up" -- a famous quote coined by former NC State coach Jim Valvano.   This has truly been a team theme throughout this season.  Going into the Catholic League, some people passed over The Prep and talked about powerhouses Roman and Neumann-Goretti.  These two, both very good, deserve the hype because they have a lot of talent, but once again those kids from 17th and Girard never focused on what people said about them.  People may say what they want, but once the ref throws that ball up it's how teams respond.  I could tell this game was pretty big, because around 8:15, during 1st period, Pat Glynn and Pat Bradley took a ride to Broad and Vine to get another 20 tickets to the game.  Throughout school people kept coming up to me saying, “Let me get a ticket.” This was probably the toughest ticket in the city tonight.  Philadelphia University was jam packed, mostly Roman Catholic faithful, but the Prep was well represented led by Pete “Crispy” Crispino and Chris Collier aka “The Regulars”.
          The game finally started and Coach Mike Lally turned toward to me and shouted “‘Bout time! I've been waiting all day.”  This had all the makings of a Catholic League Playoff game, the fans were going crazy, and the parents were shouting.  The game featured some great matchups: Malik Perry vs Reggie Redding, and the backcourt of Joe Fox and Corey O’Rourke vs Bob Jordan and Ray “Doodles” Sims.
          Once again underrated PG Joe Fox played very well shooting 5 for 11 for 13 points and 2 assists.  He continues to play hard and well making him and his teammates better.  Fox continued to play hard on the defensive end and also the offensive end.  Reggie Redding shot 8 for 18 for another 20-point game, and added 5 rebounds 3 steals and 3 assists.  These two players are like elements; they've got great chemistry (Get it? Elements and chemistry).  Larry “Baby Face” Loughery also added 4 points and 8 rebounds controlling the boards in the last 2 minutes of the ball game.

         Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke is a freak of nature, he has the nastiest hops in the world.   In the last couple of minutes in the game Corey was flying in the air grabbing rebounds.  He had 9 points in the fourth quarter, which was a huge boost for the Prep to take over the game.  He finished shooting 4 for 8 from the floor for 14 points 12 rebounds and 4 assists.  With these numbers Hollywood is going to skip college and go straight to the League.
          I need to apologize for all the Curtin Call fans on my lack of reporting in the last couple games so here is a recap:

          SJ Prep 53  Simon Gratz 49: Melo goes for 26
          SJ Prep 77  Springfield Delco 42: Joe Fox takes home MVP with 14 points
          SJ Prep 31  Germantown Academy: Prep shot 24%
          SJ Prep 68  PW 52: Melo goes for 20
          SJ Prep 61  Ridley 45: Prep wins Christmas tourney, Hollywood all-tourney team, Redding MVP
          SJ Prep 69  Lasalle 28: LaSalle 28  LaSalle’s Turnovers  30, advantage T.O
Fun Fact:  The Prep is 6-0 at Philly U
Shoutouts:  My first is going to the Bison of Bucknell after upsetting the Pitt Panthers; John Griffin played 21 minutes shooting 3 for 8 for 9 points.  My next is going to LB Andrew Spross, an ex-basketball player who has the heart of Brian Cardinal and the shot of Ray Allen.  My last is going to Tommy Fox, because he is one of biggest fans, if not the biggest fan, of the Curtin Call.

DEC. 12
SJ Prep 47, Penn Charter 30
          The time is now if the Hawks of St. Joe's want to open some eyes in the city.  It started today at Gwynedd-Mercy College, when the Hawks took on the Quakers of Penn Charter.  This game has been a three-year rivalry starring the likes of Mark Zoller (Penn), John Griffin (Bucknell), Chris Clark (Temple), Rob Kurz (Notre Dame), and Sean Singletary (Virginia).  At this game we saw two emerging stars in this city in Reggie Redding and Sammy Zeglinski.   Once again the Prep came out firing behind the Junior Redding.  Joe “The Floor General” Fox had another Eric Snow-like performance doing the little things to help the Prep win; he shot 3 for 5 for 9 points and 4 assists.  His other partner in crime Corey “Hollywood” O’Rourke had 10 points and 6 rebounds on 4 of 6 shooting.  Sammy Zeglinski also added 11 points for the Quakers.
          The MVP goes to Reggie Redding for once again putting forth another amazing performance, as he basically did it all.  He grabbed rebounds, dished the ball, and shot the ball well.  He shot 10 for 17 for 23 points and grabbed 11 rebounds.  Redding showing all his ability to pass the ball.  He has confidence in his other teammates to knock a shot down.   He is not a selfish player at all.
         Stat of the Game:  The Prep shot 54 % from the field and also the defense has been amazing, 30 points, wow.
          I have only one shoutout, and it’s going to Sean Barker, a player for the Prep who has been hurt for two years due to a knee injury. Sometimes he is unnoticed, but he is definitely an unsung hero (HINT, HINT).

DEC. 8
SJ Prep 62, Pennsbury 38
          Today the Prep played its home opener against alumnus Frank Sciolla and the Falcons from Pennsbury.  As I walked into the gym the team was practicing in the dark with no lights on, I turned to my right hand man Ned Dillon and I said, “Why aren’t the lights on”, he replied by saying, “They didn’t want to wait till the lights turned on”.  Wow this team is “full of guts, they do not lack guts”, this team is not afraid of the dark.  This saying was made famous by the first period math teacher/AD, Jim Murray.  I’d have to say I am not doing to well in math so if you are reading this and you are good at math I am looking for a tutor.  Anyway this game was a very hard fought game throughout the whole game; there was even a punch thrown.   I thought this would be played clean considering this was a Holy Day of Obligation.
          Dave “Mr. Consistency” Stefanski scored in double-digits for the fourth straight time in as many starts.  Dave, only a junior, has showed that he is ready to play on varsity, and earn a spot in the lineup for a long time. He shot 4 for 9 from the field and 3 for 6 from trey land for 12 points 2 assists and 5 rebounds.  Yet again Reggie Redding put on a show as he shot 6 for 15 for 14 points 8 assists 4 steals and 6 rebounds.  Reggie has played very well these first 4 games; he has been the glue to this team.  If he isn’t scoring he is passing to his supporting cast which includes Stefanski, Fox, and O’Rourke.  He has great court vision and his ability to read the ball off the rim is amazing.   Corey O’Rourke, coming off a personal record of 7 three’s, shot 2 for 7 for 7 points and 3 assists.
         My second MVP of the season is going to Joe Fox.  Fox shot 5-9 from three land for 17 points 2 assists and 5 steals.  If I were Neal McGee I would be sweating because his record has been in jeopardy the past 2 weeks.  Joe who is a first year varsity starter has been very good throughout the season and in my opinion he is one guy that could be very dangerous throughout this year with his combination of sweet shooting and great defense.
          Stat of the game: The Prep had 11 steals compared to Pennsbury’s 1;  Bucknell signee Jason Vegotsky had a Pennsbury high 16 points.

         For my weekly shout-outs:  My first goes to Mrs. Fox, mother of Joe and Kevin Fox for having a team party after the game Saturday night, keep up the good work.  My second goes to Bucknell coach Pat Flannery, who was present at the game today. And my last goes to Paul Romanczuk, coach of Archbishop Carroll, so that he gets better for the Catholic League.

DEC. 4
SJ Prep 62, Abington Friends 42
          Don’t ever sleep on the Prep basketball team, because they will light any team up on any given night.  Going into the season this “underrated” team got no love from the Inquirer, but that’s okay they proved it on the court tonight when they beat a very talented Abington Friends team.  The Prep’s backcourt played a huge role in the victory over Abington Friends.  Joe Fox was 3 for 9 from the floor for 10 points and 4 assists, while Dave Stefanski shot 3 for 8 for 10 points and 5 rebounds.  Joe Fox held Aron Cohen, a very talented guard who is heading for Penn, to only 7 points.  Fox got his D-Block on as he showed everyone that his defense is flawless.  Reggie Redding, the only returning starter, who has put up 36 against Benedictine and 24 against CHA, had another good game against Andrew Jones and Jason Love.  Redding had 13 points, 5 assists, 3 steals and 8 rebounds.  The Prep got help off the bench from the “Diaper Dandy”, Larry Loughery who added 5 points and 2 rebounds, and Kevin Gallagher who had 3 points and 3 rebounds. Loughery (freshman) and Gallagher (sophomore) are 2 emerging stars in the Catholic League. The MVP of the game put Reggie Miller-like numbers up as he shot 7 for 11 from three-land.  Corey O’Rourke was unconscious all game, everything he shot seemed like it went in.  He finished with 21 points 2 assists 2 steals and 6 rebounds. O’Rourke, the best defender in the Catholic League, also took a charge which put the Charge-O-Meter at 1.  He was only 2 three’s away from tying Neal McGee for the school record.
         Stat of the Game: Prep defense did not allow an Abington Friends player to score in double digits; high scorer was Jason Love with 9.
           Now for my weekly shout-outs:  My first goes to Vince Morrison, former Father Judge and Drexel basketball player who invented the Triple Threat positions.   His son Andrew plays basketball at Bucknell with John Griffin.   The next goes to Pete Crispino on another successful football season, and my last goes to Andrew Spross, Jim Bogan, Steve Quinn, Jim McCormick, Brendan Gilroy, Dan Voss, and Mike Boyle who fell a little short in the championship to O’Hara this first entry is dedicated to these guys. Next game is Wednesday against Pennsbury.