Sunday, March 28, 2010

Plymouth-Whitemarsh Takes State Title

Last night, at the Bryce Jordan Center at Penn State, the Plymouth-Whitemarsh Colonials defeated the Penn Wood Patriots 58-51 to take home the Pennsylvania AAAA title. The win avenged an overtime loss to Penn Wood in the District 1 Final at Villanova. The Colonials were led by senior forward CJ Aiken's 19 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 blocked shots. Senior guard Whis Grant had yet another strong performance as well, dropping 17 points and really controlling the game's tempo. On the other side, Penn Wood got 15 points from both Aaron Brown and Tyree Johnson. Shawn Oakman, the junior center for Penn Wood, was held to only 4 points. He was not nearly the factor that he was when the teams met in the district final.

CJ Aiken's last high school game of his career was certainly one to remember. Plymouth-Whitemarsh trailed by 4 at the half and Aiken was kept relatively in check. He had the Colonials' first 4 points in the game on dunks, but was quiet after that, only hitting a pair of free throws. CJ was a force in the second half though, providing a number of highlight-reel plays. He had two blocks on Penn Wood's Aaron Brown as well as a put-back one-handed dunk that had the Plymouth-Whitemarsh faithful happy they traveled west to Happy Valley.

The first time the teams met, in the district final, the turning point was Aaron Brown's dunk that had Aiken running for cover. In this game, the turning point was a rejection of Brown by Aiken. Aaron's dunk attempt was swatted away by Aiken this time, and Plymouth-Whitemarsh didn't look back from there.

Brown did have a solid game for the Patriots still, especially in the first half. Aaron and Tyree Johnson sparked Penn Wood to an early lead, but it was closed to 30-26 at the half.

Saint Joseph's coaches Phil Martelli and Geoff Arnold were on hand for the game, as was Temple's Fran Dunphy. Both schools are recruiting Penn Wood's Aaron Brown. During the TV telecast, the announcers stated that Shawn Oakman was at Penn State a day early, on a visit for the Nittany Lions football team. Temple is also heavily recruiting Plymouth-Whitemarsh's junior forward Jaylen Bond, who was limited to only 5 points in this game after having a career game in the semi-finals with Pitt coach Jaime Dixon in the house.

A number of links to recaps, video, and pictures from the game are below:

Inquirer Article by Rick O'Brien

Times Herald Article and Video from State Final

Chris Vito Article from Delco Times

The picture above of CJ Aiken's block on Aaron Brown is from the Times Herald article linked above.

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