The Princeton Vikings of Cincinnati took on Great Crossing of Georgetown, KY in the Holiday Hardwood Classic on Sunday.
The first basket of the game was scored on a thunderous dunk by Great Crossing's Jeremiah Jeremiah Godfrey, which was answered by two quick buckets for Princeton's Landon Miree. After the second bucket, 55 seconds into the game, Great Crossing star and top-50 recruit Malachi Moreno went down with a lower-leg injury and was helped off by a trainer. Princeton earned another bucket by Miree and a three pointer by Rognny Santiago-Lugo to take a 9-4 early lead. Great Crossing tied the game at 13 on a layup by Jaylen Warren, but an and-one by Princeton's Sebastian Jordan-Ramos gave the Vikings an 18-14 advantage. A back-and-forth first quarter ended with holding a 19-17 lead.
The second quarter was a back-and-forth start, and Moreno re-entered the game with 3:18 remaining in the half. Moreno scored to tie the game at 25, before another layup by Miree. Godfrey threw down another dunk, and another fastbreak layup led Princeton to call a timeout with under a minute to play. Ultimately, Great Crossing took a 33-32 lead at halftime.
The second half started with another three-pointer by Santiago-Lugo, answered by a Vince Dawson bucket for Great Crossing. Santiago-Lugo added another four point to extend the Princeton lead to 41-35, before another Moreno bucket and a Godfrey slam. Brendan Braddix and Daniel Jones hit back-to-back threes for Princeton to give the Vikings their largest lead of the game at 47-39 with 3:42 left in the third quarter. Keeping with the theme, Great Crossing quickly answered with a Dawson three-pointer and a Moreno and-one. Princeton continued to push the pace and took a 54-52 lead into the final quarter.
The fourth quarter began with a flurry of action. Santiago-Lugo hit another three-pointer for Princeton before an alley-oop by Moreno on the other end. Princeton's hot shooting continued with a three by Braddix, before Moreno muscled his way for another and-one. Great Crossing held a 67-62 lead with three minutes to go, and a dunk by Godfrey basically closed out the game.
Great Crossing defeated Princeton 79-74. Malachi Moreno was named the LaRosa's game MVP.