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High School Basketball:
Life Center Academy Ends Regular Season Easily

Friday, February 14, 2003

By Vincent Lewis
SJSports Staff Writer

The Life Center Academy boy's basketball team again has won the Penn-Jersey Athletic Association title. The high school team from Burlington has been racking up the wins against just a few teams from South Jersey, but most of their victories against programs from Pennsylvania, New York and North/Central Jersey. No matter where they have played, it seems as if they usually walk away off the court with the win. Mercer Christian Academy were the Warriors latest victims doubling up the score winning 106-47. Say what you have to say about the opponents that they play against, but there is no doubt that they have some serious talent on the team.

South Jersey probably hasn't heard too much about the Warriors. The only area schools that might sound familiar that Life Center Academy has played were Cherokee, Rancocas Valley and Atlantic City. The starting five are all headed to the next level of college basketball. But before they can really to start to concentrate about the Universities they have selected, there is a post-season tournament in Erie Pennsylvania that begins March 6 – 9 they are eager to participate. That tournament would be the National Christian School Tournament that consists of several brackets competing for the top prize. The Warriors were selected to participate in one of the highest-ranking bracket of the tournament.

Narmbaye Mbainai (LaSalle University), Raphael DaSilva (Florida International University), Moussa Mbaye (Valparaiso University), Arnaud Dahi (Old Dominion University) and Darryl Gladden II (Farleigh Dickinson, Sienna or Coastal Carolina) are all talented players with bright futures ahead of them. The team has won over twenty games with only two loses.

Mercer Christian Academy fell behind quickly in this game as the Warriors established control right from the start of this game. An eighteen point first quarter lead swelled to a 62-29 halftime advantage. The Warriors continued to dominate the second half even with some of the starters getting an extended rest. Mercer Christian Academy got valiant efforts from Ryan Oessenich who had a team high 20 points and 17 points from Lorenz Blackwell. Life Center Academy was led by Mark Chol's 27 points, Moussa Mbaye added 14 points, Raphael DaSilva dropped in 13 points, Aaron Gray chipped in 12 points and Jordan Fazio knocked down 11 points for the Warriors.

Photos by Mark Fletcher

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