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STEVE YEATER, AP
Mater Dei players celebrate their victory over Sheldon of Sacramento in the CIF State Division 1 championship game at Power Balance Pavilion in Sacramento.
Go to the OCVarsity Hot Shots slideshow for the state championship games to see all of the photos from this contest.

Mater Dei sets record with ninth state title

OCVARSITY.COM

SACRAMENTO - Katin Reinhardt already was having a good night.

When his Mater Dei teammate Xavier Johnson fouled out in the third quarter, Reinhardt knew he needed to have a great one.

Reinhardt scored 30 points to lead Mater Dei to a 66-48 victory over Sheldon of Sacramento in the CIF State Championships Division 1 boys basketball game Saturday at Power Balance Pavilion.

Mater Dei sophomore Stanley Johnson also was a factor, scoring 21 points, 15 of them in the second quarter, with 11 rebounds and five assists.

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OCVarsity Hot Shots: State championship games

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The victory gave Mater Dei (34-3), which opened the season as the state’s top-ranked team, and Coach Gary McKnight their ninth state boys basketball championship, the most of any school in state boys basketball history.

Southern California teams won five the 10 state championship games. Private schools went 10-0 in the state finals.

Reinhard’s 30 points was the calmest 30 points a high school player can score. Reinhardt was in his rhythm early, and he never seemed to rush a shot in the biggest game of his life.

“I was feeling it early,” Reinhardt said. “In the second quarter, I wasn’t involved as much and I was trying to feed the ball into the post. When ‘X’ fouled out, I said, ‘I’ve got to get this thing going.’ ”

The 6-foot-5 senior, who signed with UNLV, was 11 for 17 from the field and 6 for 12 on 3-point shots.

When Johnson fouled out, Reinhardt knew it was his time.

“I told coach, ‘I want to take this game over,' ’’ Reinhardt said. “The coaches had faith in me to do that.”

His 30 points was two shy of the CIF State Division 1 finals record, and his six 3's were the most in a CIF State finals Division 1 game.

Xavier Johnson had only one foul in the first half, but he picked up Nos. 2, 3 and 4 in quick succession in the third quarter. An official felt Johnson protested the fourth one too vehemently and slapped a technical foul on the senior – fouling Johnson out with that fifth foul.

“I don’t know what the ref was talking about,” Xavier said.

He was relieved that he had the other Johnson and Reinhardt to take care of the rest of the game.

“Katin’s a great player,” Xavier said. “I’ve said before he’s the best player on the team, and he showed that again.”

Xavier Johnson was not the only player to foul out. Sheldon had four starters foul out. The Huskies (29-6) were whistled for 25 fouls, while Mater Dei was called for 13. Mater Dei took 24 free throws to Sheldon’s 14 – a typical ratio in a Mater Dei game, and not surprising given the Monarchs’ attack-the-basket style.

“It wasn’t because they weren’t fouls,” McKnight said. “Guys were fouling, and it was a hard-fought game.”

Mater Dei had a three-point lead at the end of the first quarter, and had a 33-27 advantage at halftime. Mater Dei took a seven-point lead into the fourth quarter, in which the Monarchs outscored Sheldon by 11 points.

As for the record-setting ninth state title, McKnight said, “It just means I’ve had a lot of good players for a lot of years.”

He had a few good ones this year. One of them, Reinhardt, was as good as they get Saturday night.


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