The Mater Dei High School boys basketball team, the fifth ranked prep hoops squad in the country by USA Today, traveled to Ohio to take on St. Edward High School on Monday night.
The game would reunite former St. Edward basketball standout Elijah Brown with his old team. Brown, son of former Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Mike Brown, played for the Eagles until he was a sophomore when his father was released by the club. Mike Brown landed a job with the Los Angeles Lakers at which time Elijah joined the Monachs of Mater Dei.
Mater Dei fell short in their matchup against the Eagles, as St. Edward separated themselves from the Monarchs in the second half.
St. Ed's Kipper Nichols dominated the interior all game, recording 22 points and 10 rebounds on the night and 10 rebounds. He sealed the game with a signature slam with two minutes left in the contest.
Stanley Johnson, a 6-7 junior, led the Monarchs with 16 points, Brown was the only other player in double figures for Mater Dei. He had three fouls in the first half that limited his time on the floor.
Mater Dei came into the contest with an unblemished 20-0 record and are back-to-back California state champions.
This was a great turnaround for the Eagles, whose wings were clipped on Saturday night by rival St. Ignatius 58-56. The magnitude of this game may help propel the team into a deep tournament run reminiscent of last year's state semifinal appearance.
Check out our photos from the marquee matchup.
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