|VIDEO: St. Augustine dominates Don Bosco in state final|
The majority of the fans at the Pine Belt Arena for the Non-Public A boys' basketball championship were there to cheer for St. Augustine Prep. And the way the game went, those fans had a lot to cheer about.
St. Augustine totally dominated Don Bosco Prep, 83-50, to capture the title. Sa'eed Nelson starred for the Hermits, scoring 30 points and adding six assists. Nelson drilled a 50-foot buzzer-beater just before halftime to cap a first half that saw St. Augustine race out to a 26-point lead.
Justyn Mutts scored 21 points for the Hermits, including four rim-rattling dunks that got the fans riled up. Austin Kennedy added 11.
Don Bosco, which jumped out to the lead in its upset of Seton Hall Prep in the sectional final two days earlier, this time fell behind quickly. A 14-0 run in the first quarter set the tone for the entire game.
The Ironmen did pull within eight points in the second quarter, but St. Augustine responded by closing out the half with a 23-5 burst, capped by Nelson's half-court heave.
Marcellus Earlington came off the bench to lead Don Bosco with 11 points. Brandon Anderson scored nine, while reserve Matt Petrosino had eight points in the fourth quarter.
It was a rough ending to a great season for the Ironmen, who won a league title, reached the Bergen County Jamboree finals and captured their first sectional crown in 46 years. Don Bosco finishes at 26-4.
St. Augustine wins its first state title in five years and improves to 30-1 on the season. The Hermits' only loss came to unbeaten St. Anthony's, which also won a state title on Saturday; the two teams could meet again in the Tournament of Champions.
For sports video highlights of this New Jersey high school boys' basketball state tournament championship final game, click play in the box at left.