Boys Basketball

Brazil’s big night lifts Belleville West past Springfield Catholic

Belleville West guard Lawrence Brazil scored a team-high 18 points and cinched the state title with the steal of an inbound pass against Whitney Young last spring.
Belleville West guard Lawrence Brazil scored a team-high 18 points and cinched the state title with the steal of an inbound pass against Whitney Young last spring. Special to the News-Democrat

At his best in big games and in pressure situations, Belleville West senior Lawrence Brazil III lived up to his reputation once again Friday at the Bass Pro Shops Tournament of Champions.

With all-state senior EJ Liddell in foul trouble for the second night in a row, Brazil scored a team-high 21 points and added four rebounds and four assists as the Maroons held off local favorite Springfield Catholic 63-57 in a consolation-round game at JQH Arena on the campus of Missouri State University in Springfield, Mo.

Will Shumpert added 10 points and seven rebounds while Keith Randolph and Jaylin Mosby added nine points each for the Maroons (18-1) who advance to the consolation final on Saturday against Rainier Beach, Wash., at 4 p.m.

The defending Class 4A state champions and current top-ranked team in the Class 4A state poll, the Maroons saw their 32-game winning streak end on Thursday with a 74-57 loss to Shadow Mountain High School of Phoenix, Arizona.

But taking on the hometown favorite, Springfield Catholic, the Maroons played well early. With Brazil leading the way, the Maroons had a 34-24 advantage at halftime then held off the Fighting Irish in the final two quarters.

Liddell fiinished with seven points and four rebounds before fouling out.

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