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Boys Basketball: Matthews leads St. Rita to 69-58 win over Gonzaga, D.C.

St. Rita's Dominique Matthews pushes hoop past Gonzaga's Chris Lykes. | Patrick Gleason/For Sun-Times Media

St. Rita's Dominique Matthews pushes to the hoop past Gonzaga's Chris Lykes. | Patrick Gleason/For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: January 9, 2014 9:57AM



With his younger brother, Charles, the state’s top-rated junior injured, Dominique Matthews has taken ownership of the name.

Dominique, St. Rita’s senior swingman, put together his second consecutive brilliant offensive performance, scoring 15 of his game-high 34 points in the third quarter as the Mustangs stormed back from a seven-point halftime deficit to run past Gonzaga, D.C., 69-58 in the Chicago Elite Classic at the UIC Pavilion on Saturday.

Matthews has scored 73 points in the Mustangs’ first two games of the season.

“He’s really picked up the slack for his brother and he’s carrying both brothers’ names right now,” St. Rita senior forward Vic Law said. “When you’re hot you have to ride him. All of us are really playing off of him right now.”

Charles Matthews, Dominique’s brother, is ESPN’s No. 11-rated prospect in the Class of 2015. Charles is recovering from a slight tear in his left ankle and said he hopes to return in two weeks.

The momentum in Saturday’s game swung decisively to start the second half. St. Rita, which had fallen behind 31-24 at the break despite 10 points from Matthews and eight by Law, got a boost when Gonzaga coach Steve Turner was assessed a technical foul for protesting a charge call.

Matthews then took over. He scored 11 points during a 15-6 St. Rita run that gave the Mustangs their first lead at 39-37 with 3:38 to play in the third quarter.

“I’m not really surprised by the early scoring,” Matthews said. “I just know I have to bring it every game until my brother gets back. Being a four-year starter, I know what I have to do.”

Law contributed 14 points, nine rebounds and three blocks. He did not score in the pivotal third quarter but recorded two beautiful backdoor assists that helped the Mustangs take a 47-43 lead to start the fourth quarter.

“That was the focus for us to attack the basket in the second half,” Law said. “We took too many bad jump shots that weren’t helping our offense. In the second half, we did a much better job of controlling the tempo.”

Senior guard Treston Forbes also starred for the Mustangs. He scored eight consecutive points to start the fourth quarter.

“We wanted to attack the basket,” Forbes said.

After missing the Mustangs’ season-opening overtime loss to Curie, 6-foot-8 junior Myles Carter returned to action and registered four blocks and grabbed six rebounds.

Matthews put the game away with two three-point plays in the final 2:20.

“We didn’t come out as hard as we needed and our shots weren’t falling in the first half,” Matthews said. “In the second half, we just knew we had to attack the basket.”

Sam Miller, a 6-8 junior forward, scored 20 points to lead Gonzaga. Bradley Jacks added 12 points. Star point guard Bryant Crawford was limited to just five points.



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