Mackin scored the game's first six points, built a 14-point lead, then held on to slide past Coolidge, 68-63, in a preliminary to the George Washington-Villanova game last night at Smith Center.
Taking advantage of superior inside height, the Trojans ran a motion offense off 6-foot-7 center Cecil Rucker and 6-5 forward Kevin Black to can short jumpers and layups while sprinting to a 25-11 first-quarter lead.
Coolidge, which is expected to challenge Dunbar and McKinley for Interhigh supremacy, had nine turnovers in the opening quarter and converted only four of 11 shots.
"They were just much better at the start of the game than we were," said Colt Coach Frank Williams. "Their veteran guard Kenny Payne controlled the tempo like a veteran should and it was just too much of a lead to spot against a good team like Mackin."
Coolidge closed to 56-51 early in the fourth quarter as Ron Moses, who got 11 of his game-high 21 points in the third quarter, and Billy Wright each had hot hands.
At that point, Trojan sharpshooter Steve Jenkins took over on defense with two steals, feeding to Payne for a layup and to Rucker for a three-point play and a Mackin lead of 61-53 with 2:57 left.
After a Coolidge timeout, the Colts forced two turnovers themselves on man-to-man pressing tactics to draw within 63-57. Black, who played the entire secon dhalf with four fowls, the teamed with Ruaker to take control of the boards as Colt shooting again went cold.
"They tried to lean on me and use their strength," said the lanky 180-pound Rucker, "but I just spun off their backs and went to the glass."
"They didn't block out too well," added Black. "They tried, but they didn't stick with the blocks long enough to be really effective."
With 52 seconds left Jenkins connected on a 12-footer to break the short Mackin draught and ice the game.
In the Episcopal tournament, the host school landed its second straight title with a 56-37 championship win over St. Stephen's as John Dixon finished with 26 points. Gilman of Baltimore beat Mercersberg of Pennsylvania, 60-43, in the consolation.