High School Sports

Highlanders down region champion Cardinals

Heathwood Hall closed out the regular season with a 44-39 upset of SCISA Region 2-3A champion Cardinal Newman on Thursday. The Highlanders (20-7, 7-3) can do no worse than finish in a second-place tie with Ben Lippen in the final tabulations.

Mac Whalen led the Highlanders, who were without sophomore star Corey Littlejohn for the second game in a row, with 18 points, while Joseph James and Morgan Whalen scored nine points apiece.

The Cardinals, playing in their third game in four days, just did not have the fire they did on Tuesday when they wrapped up the region championship with a win against Hammond.

“We were really flat, especially after an emotional win on Tuesday but give Heathwood Hall credit for playing well,” said CN coach Kevin Rose.

Cardinal Newman (17-6, 8-2) will be one of the top three seeds in the SCISA state tournament than begins on Feb. 21. The Cardinals hope to rate a preliminary round game close to home at Heathwood Hall.

“We’ve had a great season so far,” said Rose. “We may not have as much talent as we did last year, but this is a veteran team with six seniors and we fight down to the end every night.”

None of the Cardinals six setbacks have been by more than six points.

Tonight, Ben Lippen hosts Augusta Christian with a chance to match Heathwood’s region record.