NEW CASTLE, Ind. -- It is tournament tradition for the losing team to stay on the court after the championship of the City Securities Hall of Fame Classic as the all-tournament team is announced and the winning team has its photo taken.
Cathedral, after losing 60-54 to Tech in Friday night's championship game, complied with the tradition. The Irish players and coaches stood along the baseline of New Castle Fieldhouse, their laser-beam stares practically burning holes through the jubilant Tech team.
If this wasn't a rivalry before, it certainly is now.
Class 4A fifth-ranked Tech defeated No. 10 Cathedral for the second time in three weeks behind a 17-point, 14-rebound effort from tournament Most Valuable Player Trey Lyles, who sat out long stretches of Friday's game with foul trouble. Lyles scored 14 of his points in the third quarter as the Titans (8-1) turned a four-point deficit into a 10-point lead.
"At some point in the game, great players take the game over," Tech coach Jason Delaney said. "He did that in the third quarter. He took the ball aggressive to the basket, and he made some great decisions as well."
Lyles had 19 points and 17 rebounds in Tech's 72-59 win over Fort Wayne Northrop in the semifinal game.
It was the second of a possible four meetings between the teams with the City Tournament and sectional still to come. Cathedral coach Andy Fagan said he is hopeful that senior Collin Hartman could return from his broken left wrist in time for the City Tournament.
While Delaney admitted the sectional is what people will ultimately remember most, Lyles said there is something to be gained from the Titans' two wins over the Irish (4-3).
"It shows that we can play with anybody and when we play together we are a top-five team in the state," he said. "It definitely feels good, but we know we might play them two more times. It's definitely physical. They go hard at us, and we go hard at them. Neither of us steps down to each other, so it's a good battle."
Tech shot 27-for-32 from the free-throw line, compared to just 11-for-22 for Cathedral. Freshman guard C.J. Walker continued his strong play with 10 points and six rebounds as he was named to the all-tournament team.
"Guys are stepping up and making big plays," Lyles said.
The Titans also received big contributions in the win over Northrop from senior guard Leo Williams (17 points) and junior guard Jeremie Tyler (14 points, five rebounds). Delaney also noted the defense of junior Mike Jones, who helped limit Northrop guard Brenton Scott to six points.
Fort Wayne Northrop (9-2) is in the midst of a five-games-in-four-days-run that will conclude with the Summit Athletic Conference championship today in Fort Wayne. The Bruins were led by Purdue recruit Bryson Scott, who had 19 points in the loss to Cathedral and 21 in a 60-51 win over Jay County in the consolation game.
Cathedral held off a late rally by Jay County for a 53-47 semifinal win. Justin Baker led the Irish with 11 points off the bench and Devin Dixon added 10 points and six rebounds.
"We had a number of different guys who stepped up and made some plays," Fagan said. "Josh Sullen came in and gave us a spark early and Devin obviously had a heck of a start early and Justin in the second half. We had a number of different guys who got us going. I thought our depth certainly played a big factor."
Brock McFarland led Jay County with 20 points.