NEW PORT RICHEY — Wednesday night marked only the third time in 20 years that Ridgewood won the Ram Classic, and the host school did it in convincing fashion.
The Rams defeated Newsome 69-33 in the championship final to take the tournament crown.
"We use this tournament as an opportunity to make our team better before the second half of the season," Ridgewood coach Gary Anders said. "I think we started to run well and play aggressively this week, and that will definitely help."
Led by the interior play of Lukas Poderis (12 points, 12 rebounds) and Bryan Jones (12 points, eight rebounds, six assists), Ridgewood (13-2) dominated the field this week and the final game was no different. Newsome (7-3) had no answer for the two Rams big men.
"Coach (Anders) challenged me to step up and improve my game (in this tournament)," Jones said. "It's real good to be a part of one of the (Ridgewood) teams to win this (tournament)."
Poderis and Jones made the All-Tournament team for their efforts along with teammate Alvin Satram. The Ridgewood point guard finished the game with seven assists, one more than the Wolves' team total.
The Rams shut down Newsome guard Samal Shepherd, who had been the tournament's leading scorer, holding him to only six points. He wasn't the only Wolves player to be contained. Newsome finished with only 12 second-half points. After shooting 88 percent (30-for-34) from the free-throw line in the first two games of the tournament, the Wolves went only 4-for-11 on Wednesday night.
Besides the three Rams to be named to the All-Tournament squad, the honors also went to Newsome's Shepherd and Charles Murphy, St. Petersburg Catholic's Matt O'Donnell and Anthony Miles, Freedom's Brendon Bertorello, Palm Harbor University's Tyler Stevenson and Land O'Lakes' Kevin Burnell.