Cantwell goes the distance for Manogue | RecordCourier.com

Cantwell goes the distance for Manogue

It could be said that Aidan Cantwell went the extra mile to play basketball at Bishop Manogue Catholic High School in Reno.

Cantwell, who lives in Genoa, made it all worthwhile by finishing his senior season as a first-team all-Sierra League team selection for the Miners. His list of highlights included a 50-point performance against Wooster and his game-winning 3-point shot against Spanish Springs in the Northern 4A Region Tournament semifinals.

The 6-foot-4 Cantwell wound up as the leading scorer (18-point average) and rebounder (nearly 6 a game) for Manogue (19-10 overall, 12-4 league) during its run to third-place in league and on to the region finals, where the Miners lost to the Reno Huskies 62-51 on Feb. 18.

Cantwell described the win over Spanish Springs as his top highlight. Spanish Springs rallied from a 47-35 deficit in the final two minutes and tied the score 51-all with 22 seconds left, however, Cantwell came up with the final answer when he connected from the top of the key with 3.2 seconds to go for the 54-51 win.

Watching the shot go down was great. Winning the game was even better.

"I think our team making it to the championship was my highlight of the year," Cantwell said. "Just to prove people wrong who thought there was no way we would beat Spanish Springs. When we achieved that as a team, it made the whole year."

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Being named to the first-team for the second year in a row was noteworthy given the level of talent.

"Galena had the Player of the Year, Dillon Voyles," Cantwell said. "But Moses Wood, in my opinion, was the best player in the league. I can't wait to hear about him next year. He's going to be incredible. He can shoot, he can post up, he blocks shots, takes charges, he just does everything."

Another memorable game came on Jan. 27 in Minden when the Miners fell behind early, 16-1 and 25-7, then rallied to win 51-45.

"That was really scary," Cantwell said. "Ryan Barnes, Josh Meza and Tre Jackson, they're awesome players. They could not miss and we could not hit anything, but we stuck to our team basics and we got back in the game."

Cantwell remembers attending youth basketball camps in the same gym at Douglas. Oh, by the way, that's the same gym where his mother, Teya (Edwards) Cantwell, was a standout player for Douglas in the 1980s.

"I've played in that gym and I know all the Douglas kids," he said, adding with a smile. "And it's awesome my mom is a well-known basketball player there, even though she would have probably kicked my butt."

Cantwell carried a hot hand in his own right on Jan. 24 at home when he scored 50 points in a 88-41 victory over Wooster. He shot 16-for-25 from the field (4-for-7 on 3-pointers) and 14-for-14 from the free throw line. He also had 14 rebounds and four assists.

Nonetheless, Cantwell preferred to speak about a deep Manogue team.

"A lot of teams had a really strong starting five and then their bench kind of fell off," he said. "But our strength was, our bench was almost as good as the starters. That's why we made it to the championship game."

Manogue coach Moe Golshani described Cantwell as a leader.

"Aidan grew into our vocal leader on and off the court," Golshani noted. "He is a very versatile basketball player that can play shooting guard, small and power forward and is big enough to guard centers in Northern Nevada."

Andy Hughes, former Douglas basketball coach and current Manogue athletic director, has seen considerable progress in Cantwell's three varsity seasons. Hughes was an assistant coach for Manogue's 2014-15 team when Cantwell was a sophomore (older brother, James Cantwell, was a senior on that team).

"He's a really good athlete and he jumps well, but he was always too hard on himself," Hughes said. "He's matured into an outstanding player. He's just an outstanding young man."

Cantwell said he has spoken with college coaches ranging from Division I to Division III, however, he is still weighing his future options.

"I haven't decided on anything yet. I don't even know if I'm going to play in college yet. I might just go to college for college," Cantwell said, adding that he plans to study broadcast communication. "I've been looking at a lot of schools that are strong in the broadcast, communications, journalism area, and I'm looking forward to it. I think I'm going to minor in drama, actually. It's something I've always wanted to try out."

Cantwell previously attended St. Teresa Catholic School in Carson City before moving on to Manogue. He only has the best of memories from his four years at Manogue.

"I couldn't be happier about going to Manogue," Cantwell said, "and I would not rather be a part of any other basketball team."

DOUGLAS HALL OF FAME:

Teya (Edwards) Cantwell is a member of Douglas High’s Basketball Hall of Fame and school for her achievements from 1981-84. The Douglas girls qualified for the state large schools tournament for the first time in 1983 when they won the Northern AAA zone quarterfinals Reed 50-45 — Teya hit a baseline jumper with 15 seconds left to win it — and then threw a scare in the semifinals against Reno (then riding a 76-game win streak) before losing 47-43 in the University of Nevada Old Gym. That same season, she set a school single-game scoring record with 37 points against a talented Hug squad. Also in 1983, she played for an undefeated Douglas volleyball team that won the school’s first state large schools championship — she had nine kills in the final against Chaparral. (Her daughter, Sarah Cantwell, is a freshman volleyball player at Manogue.)