BOSTON — As teammate Jimmy Zenevitch fired up a pair of free throws in the game's final seconds last night, Central Catholic star Carson Desrosiers took a moment to bask in the singing of the Raiders' alma mater near the Boston Celtics' logo at center court.
"It was something I'm never going to forget," said Desrosiers. "It was such a relief that we survived. Now we want to come out on top one more time. We'll celebrate for a day, then focus again."
Desrosiers had reason to celebrate, delivering another outstanding performance and receiving plenty of contributions from role players as Central Catholic rode a stellar fourth quarter to a berth in the Division 1 title game by downing Madison Park in the Division 1 semifinals last night at the TD Garden.
"Unbelievable," said Zenevitch. "To go in and win two games at the Garden is huge. So many guys stepped up, and going back to the title game is amazing."
The Raiders (25-1) advance to the Division 1 title game at 7:45 p.m. Saturday at the DCU Center in Worcester. They will face the winner of today's battle between St. John's of Shrewsbury and East Longmeadow. It could be Central Catholic's second title in three years, having downed St. John's of Shrewsbury for the crown two years ago.
"Guys like Carson and Jimmy were here for a title two years ago," said point guard Jaycob Morales. "So they want a second ring, and a lot of us are eying our first ring. We want that state championship."
Having forced Desrosiers to the bench with four fouls early in the fourth, Madison Park was able to muster a late rally.
With a free throw and a basket by David Campbell, the Cardinals cut the lead to just two points (49-47) moments into the final frame. But that would be as close as they would get.