There’s no other way around it: Bonner-Prendergast and Cardinal O’Hara are the heavy underdogs in the Catholic League semifinal round tonight at Philly U.
The fourth-seeded Pandas — the top team in the Daily Times Super 7 — goes up against No. 1 seed and Class AA state title favorite, Neumann-Goretti. Tip-off is 6:30.
In the second half of the doubleheader, the third-seeded Lions look to exact revenge on No. 2 Archbishop Wood.
In the regular season, B-P (18-5) gave N-G (22-0) all it could handle. In fact, the Pandas were one of maybe two or three teams to give the No. 1-ranked team in the state (according to MaxPreps) a true test in that Jan. 28 meeting. Down by 10 points at the start of the fourth quarter, the Pandas battled back and got within two points, but couldn’t quite tie or go ahead. Cardinal O’Hara great and Immaculata Hall of Famer, Letty Santarelli, is head coach at Neuamm-Goretti.
O’Hara (15-7) was blown out by Archbishop Wood (19-2) back on Jan. 20, 66-40. The Lions found themselves down by 13 points (23-10) at the end of the first quarter and never recovered, despite 16 points from Mia Farmer and 12 by Sam Amicone. Tonight is another rematch of last season’s Catholic League championship game.
Bonner-Prendergast and O’Hara both need superman-like performances from their star players in order to move on the championship game Monday night at The Palestra. That calls for big nights from O’Hara’s Farmer and Prendie’s Alyssa Monaghan. If they are scoring early and often, both teams should have a very good chance at pulling off the upset.