Tyler Bourdo burned Cardinal Newman too many times.
The Augusta Christian Schools guard did well both times the Lions played the Cardinals during the regular season. Cardinal Newman coach Kevin Rose decided to let someone else try to beat his team Monday.
The result: Bourdo was held in check, the Lions shooting suffered, and the Cardinals advanced to the SCISA Region 2-AAA championship game after a 43-34 win.
"Tyler's always scored more than 20 points against us," Rose said. "We were trying to keep him below his average."
Rose kept his team in a matchup zone to help offset Bourdo's speed. He placed 6-foot-8-inch center Trey Coleman at the top of the key to keep a long arm in Bourdo's face.
The Augusta Christian senior finished with 13 points, his lowest output against the Cardinals this season.
After the game, Bourdo sat with his grandparents as the bleachers cleared out. He bore a look of disappointment, but was already looking ahead.
The Lions opened the SCISA state playoffs Saturday against Florence Christian as the Upper No. 5 seed.
"Our goal at the beginning of the season was to play for a region championship," Bourdo said. "It didn't happen, but now we'll have to come out to play Saturday."
After falling behind 5 points at the half, the Lions rallied to take the lead with 1:28 remaining in the fourth quarter.
The Lions could manage just 4 points during the final eight minutes.
"Our shot selection wasn't great in the fourth quarter," Augusta Christian coach Marty Griffin said. "That put us in a bad spot."
The Cardinals' size advantage helped keep the Lions off the boards. Coleman and fellow Cardinals big man Jake Motto teamed to offset Fred Auston, the Lions' leading rebounder.
Auston finished with 8 points, mainly from putbacks. But his drives to the basket were impeded with Coleman and Motto positioned in the zone defense.
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