For the second time in as many years — and only the second time in WCAC tournament history — a No. 8 seed upset a No. 1 seed in the quarterfinals, as McNamara knocked off top-ranked St. John’s, 73-68, on Saturday at Gallaudet University.
Bishop Ireton accomplished the feat last year when it defeated then-No. 1 Gonzaga.
McNamara was led by freshman Jamir Moultrie’s 18 points and a defensive effort that held the normally sharpshooting Cadets to just three three-pointers.
St. John’s (26-3) cut the deficit to one in the final minute, but the youthful Mustangs remained poised down the stretch, knocking down 10 of their 12 free throws to help close out the upset.
“The plan was to get them off the three-point line, so we played four different defenses, mixed it up as much as we could,” Mustangs Coach Marty Keithline said. “It was a real tough game and the kids executed the game plan well. I couldn’t be prouder of a team in my 13 years at McNamara.”
McNamara (15-15) advances to face Paul VI, which got past Gonzaga, in Sunday’s semifinals at American University. As the WCAC regular-season champion, St. John’s will move on to compete in the DCSAA tournament and Alhambra Invitational.
Related: Playoff brackets