Tag Archives: high school basketball

Maspeth High School boys basketball team advances to quarterfinals

| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy Maspeth High School

The Maspeth High School boys varsity basketball team stayed undefeated on Wednesday, surviving a tough challenge in the third round of the Public School Athletic League (PSAL) championship tournament.

Playing on their home court, the Maspeth boys defeated the High School for Health Professionals and Human Services, 62-59.

Senior guard Paolo Tamer led the way for Maspeth with an impressive triple-double, posting 24 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in the win. Team captain, senior guard/forward Damian Piszczatowski, dropped 12 points and pulled down 14 rebounds.

The next match will be this Sunday, March 8.

Maspeth earned a first-round bye in the championship tournament by posting an undefeated record in the regular season, going 18-0. With this win, the boys have run their unbeaten streak to 20 games.


No reason why Christ the King and Cardozo shouldn’t play every year

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo by Larry Fleisher


Last March, Christ the King and Cardozo were trying to advance to the state federation championship game in Albany.

The Royals wound up winning a 54-51 overtime thriller in a game that featured Rawle Alkins hitting the game-tying three-pointer in regulation and Ray Salnave scoring 20 points for Cardozo. Eventually, Christ the King won consecutive state federation titles for the first time in program history.

As nice as it was for the two schools to play, the one downside was playing the game in a location three hours north of New York City. The game started at 11 a.m. on a Friday and the stands were hardly packed.

With that in mind, the schools scheduled a regular-season meeting as the fourth game of the Nike vs. Under Armour Showcase at Christ the King on Jan. 11. As the finale of the showcase that featured Christ the King’s girls team, Lincoln, St. Raymonds, Jefferson and Long Island Lutheran, the schools met in front of a packed crowd that featured at least 20 Division I coaches in the stands at various points.

The game wasn’t a reprise of the classic playoff game as Christ the King took control early in the second half and came away with a 76-64 victory over the previously undefeated Judges. The biggest impression was the atmosphere that left both Christ the King coach Joe Arbitello and Cardozo coach Ron Naclerio saying this should be an annual regular-season game.

“We’ve got to play every year,” Arbitello said. “I think it’s something that we have to do every year. He’s the best PSAL team in Queens, we’re the best CHSAA team in Queens. Why not?”
“I have no problem doing it,” said Naclerio, who was presented with a plaque for winning his 700th game before tip-off. “To be the best, you have to play the best and beat the best. I think Joe liked it.”

Having the game played in this kind of atmosphere also prompted the question of why the two best teams in Queens had not played in the regular season in recent years.

“I was a new coach, I don’t know, stupidity on my part,” Arbitello said. “I don’t know. It was stupid. We played last year in the state semifinal game in Albany and there were five people in the gym and it was 11 in the morning. You come here and this is the atmosphere that this game should be played in, not like that.”

There is a rematch at Cardozo on Jan. 29, 2016, at a time to be determined. By then Alkins, Salnave and Aaron Walker will be seniors, while Jose Alvarado will be a junior.

The Royals will be hoping Alkins is feeling much better and that Alvarado’s development will continue.

Alkins played with the flu and scored six points and had 12 rebounds, and when he picked up his fourth foul he suggested the Royals use a zone defense. Alvarado compensated for Alkins being sick by getting 25 points in a variety of ways and Christ the King’s depth also highlighted the win.

“We haven’t been a one-man show all year, but he’s happy to win, and he’s happy his teammates did well,” Arbitello said. “That’s what makes him a great basketball player, not just what he does on the floor.”

The Judges will hope to see more of the acrobatic moves and physical defense from Walker, who had 18 points. They will also aim to win a game that many hope will be a regular-season staple of the Queens high school basketball season.

“I liked what I saw and I hope the kids get better,” Naclerio said. “Some shots didn’t fall and some threes went in and out and they went back and got a quick layup. That’s the way the cookie crumbles.”

The odds are good that the schools could meet in Albany in the state federation playoffs. After an atmosphere like that on Jan. 11, the goal will be to duplicate it on a yearly basis and create a game few will forget.


Cardozo basketball coach notches his 700th victory with more to come

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Cardozo basketball Facebook page


Ron Naclerio keeps scorebooks of every game that he has ever coached, including his first win Nov. 30, 1981, a 56-40 victory over Aviation. That was his only victory in his first season coaching Cardozo as the youngest coach in the PSAL. At the time Naclerio wasn’t thinking about getting 699 more wins or looking 33 years ahead.

“My first year I only won one game. You win one game [per] year, I’d have to coach 700 years [to make it to the 700th win],” Naclerio said.

Naclerio didn’t have to coach 700 years. He gradually built a strong program at the Bayside school that would eventually became a major force in the PSAL. Several of his players, such as Duane Causewell, Royal Ivey and Rafer Alston, reached the NBA and many others including the Woodward brothers, Daryll Hill and Ryan Rhoomes got Division I college scholarships.

Naclerio’s 700th victory happened on Dec. 22 with a 73-61 game against High School of Construction. It came over three and a half years after his 600th victory by beating All Hallows and seven years after his 500th victory in a game against Flushing.

“That’s great,” said Rhoomes, a junior forward now playing at Fordham. “He’s one of my favorite coaches.”

Only when the Cardozo Judges survived a tough game did his latest coaching milestone sink in. Naclerio could not quite enjoy the moment until Rashond Salnave’s three-pointer late in the game gave the Judges an insurmountable 12-point lead.

After the three-pointer, assistant coach and former player Mike Blissett congratulated Naclerio. And when the game ended many of his current players embraced the passionate and frenetic coach, who was mostly relieved that Cardozo pulled out a victory after being down by one point at the start of the fourth quarter.

“When we won the game, I was so relieved because we started the fourth quarter down one and it was six with about a minute to go,” Naclerio said.

Naclerio became the fourth coach in New York State to reach 700 wins and third in the city to achieve that many victories. The late Molloy coach Jack Curran had 972 in 55 seasons. Campus Magnet coach Chuck Granby had 711 victories in his career.

Naclerio achieved the milestone with about 1,000 people in Cardozo’s gym, which he said seats 900. He also had more than 50 former players in attendance. Since notching the win, he has been getting endless phone calls, texts, and Twitter and Facebook messages.

“That’s a number that very few people have a chance to say [they achieved],” Naclerio said. “I’m the youngest in New York State high school, college or pro to do that. I didn’t realize that.”

Before building the Judges’ basketball program, Naclerio was a ballboy for the Red Holzman’s Knicks from 1970-75. He also played baseball for St. John’s and played four years in the minor leagues for the Chicago White Sox. Naclerio also worked as assistant coach under Al Matican, whom he also played for at Cardozo.

Naclerio doesn’t regret sticking with high school basketball, instead of moving to coach college. By sticking with high school coaching, he said he has had the chance to witness some other memorable victories besides his team’s two city championships.

Among the most noteworthy in Naclerio’s mind were a four-overtime victory over St. Anthony’s, a comeback from an eight-point deficit against Springfield Gardens with less than a minute to play in 1988 and the PSAL semifinal victory over Lincoln in 1999 that preceded Cardozo’s first championship.

In between memorable wins, Naclerio has spent numerous hours scouting and preparing while using his passion for the sport to getting the most out of his players.

“When I played basketball, I was the all-time hustler,” Naclerio said. “There’s no such thing as too much hustle in basketball and I was like that when I played. I was like that when I played baseball and I think it just carried it over.”


The next level

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo by Omari Maynard


High School of Construction does not have the tradition that Cardozo, Campus Magnet and Bayside have accumulated over the years. The school has existed for less than a decade and is in its second season competing in Queens AA — the highest level of borough basketball.

After going 20-10 in their last two seasons competing in the Queens A division against Springfield Gardens and John Adams, the Red Hawks won 14 league games last year. The only two losses were to Cardozo, and then the Red Hawks knocked the Judges off in the borough championship game last February at City College.

The Red Hawks saw their first season competing in Queens AA end with a second-round overtime loss to Brooklyn Collegiate. That was the last game of second-leading scorer Marlon Alcindor and the final game of Justin Wright-Foreman’s first season with the school after transferring from Christ the King.

This year, the Red Hawks are looking to remain a significant force in the PSAL and so far they’re doing it well with an overall record of 8-0. As of Dec. 15, they have won their first five league games by nearly 25 points per game and have averaged 78 points while holding opponents to 53 points.

“They were always good but they played in a lower league,” coach Cory Semper said before a 76-39 win at Van Buren last week. “The school is the type of school I don’t see any parents turning down. It’s a great school. It just works. It’s a public school in a Catholic school environment. That’s what kids want and parents want.”

The success also breeds attention and perhaps nobody on the Red Hawks gets in the spotlight more than shooting guard Justin Wright-Foreman. He averaged 21.6 points last year in league play, 25.2 in five playoff games and through five league games, Wright-Foreman has averaged 27.4.

“It’s good,” Semper said of coaching Wright-Foreman. “I’ve had kids like him before when I was at Bayside. So I’m used to it. But he’s a go-to guy. When we need something we go through him. It’s good coaching him. He’s confident. He’s confident in his teammates. It’s a good experience.”

Normally someone with those totals would be attracting coaches from many Division I colleges, but Wright-Foreman has already decided where he will be playing next season. He had about 15 scholarship offers but committed to Hofstra in early October.

“We wanted to get it over with early,” Semper said. “He had 15 offers on the table, but it was a matter of choosing the right one. I think he had Hofstra in his heart all the time, but he wanted to see what else was going on out there, but I think he made a great choice for him and his family.”

The Red Hawks are not just about Foreman-Wright. They also have an effective secondary scorer in Kyle Allman, a St. John’s Prep transfer who has averaged 13.2 points in league games and had 26 in a 106-66 non-league win over Wadleigh at Gauchos Gym in the Bronx on Dec. 14.

They also have a rugged rebounder in 6-foot-5 Bryshon Bryant, who had 11 rebounds against Van Buren and has 41 through five league games.

Still there are times when Wright-Foreman will have to take over, a point he acknowledged after getting 22 against Van Buren last week.

“I want my teammates to get open,” he said. “But sometimes I have to take control of the game, but most importantly I have to get my teammates involved. Give them the ball and let them work.”

So far everything is working for Construction from their elite shooting guard to their smothering trapping defense, but like many coaches, Semper believes the team’s performance can get even better.

“It’s still early,” Semper said. “We still got a lot of learning to do. There are a couple of teams that are dominant right now. We’re not on that level. I think we’ve got to lose a couple of games to see how good we are but hopefully we don’t lose any.”




The winning attitude

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com



It began the first time Ray Salnave stepped foot inside the gym at Cardozo High School.

Even before any of the fall teams at the Bayside school started practicing, Salnave was working on his game over a span of about seven hours, according to coach Ron Naclerio.

Two years later, Salnave and the Judges are the defending city champions and are looking to add a third banner to a program that has produced standouts such as Rafer Alston, Duane Causwell, Duane and Brian Woodward, Royal Ivey and Darryl Hill.

To hear Naclerio say it, as good as those players were, Salnave is wired differently, and the junior shooting guard has a different motor on the court.

“He has certain traits that very [few] kids I’ve ever coached have,” Naclerio said. “He’s got one or two traits that none of the kids I’ve coached had. He’s tough to coach because he’s volatile sometimes and people know when he was young and childish, he did things but the volatility is his desire to win. I would probably say out of all the players I’ve ever coached, he might have the closest desire to win as do.”

“It’s a good thing, but some people are used to the ordinary basketball player,” Salnave said. “You can say I’m an ordinary basketball player, but my thing is I like to win. Whatever it takes, I’ll do what it takes to win. Coach says that about me — that means I’m doing something good. We have the same goal. We both don’t like losing.”

That desire manifested itself during the final seconds of title game against Thomas Jefferson at Barclays Center. In Cardozo’s 55-54 victory, Salnave drove to the basket, was fouled and made the free throws with 2.5 seconds remaining. That ended a 16-point game that saw him go 10-of-12 from the line and a title run that saw the Judges defeat teams from the powerhouse Brooklyn AA Division in Boys & Girls, South Shore, Brooklyn Collegiate and Jefferson.

Now Cardozo is the team to beat and even more so than other non-title years. The last time Cardozo won a title was in 1999, and since then, there have been some difficult defeats, notably a four-point overtime loss to Jefferson in the 2013 quarterfinals, a one-point loss to Lincoln in the 2011 semifinals and a five-point loss to Boys & Girls in the 2010 title game.

“When you put so much into it and you make it the most important thing in your life, it’s a weird feeling because you’re so used to having the agony of defeat at the end of the season,” Naclerio said. “To have that thrill of victory for the second time, you want the season to end like that and I know the odds are the season probably won’t end up like that.”

If Cardozo is going to experience that thrill again, besides Salnave — who averaged 18 points last season and was recently offered a scholarship to Rutgers — some other people will be even more important. Cardozo is replacing forwards Carl Edoua Balthazar and Francisco Williams as well as stout defenders Marzuq Jimoh and Kristian Mondesir.

Naclerio said that sophomore Tareq Coburn is ready and that he expects contributions from Armando Dunn and Amir Tutt. He also is anticipating the impact of guard Aaron Walker, who transferred from Molloy and was described as being a Division One player.

“I know how hard it is because not only do you have to be very good, you have to be a little lucky,” Naclerio said. “When you have a bad game you have to find a way to get through it in the playoffs, you got to get through injuries, you got to get through ineligibilities, you got to get through being the hunted and the kids that start the season off with the pain and agony from the previous year. It’s a lot easier to talk to them than when the kids think when the script is going to be the same.

The Judges were good by going 28-2 and 16-0 in league games. They also had the good fortune of having Salnave’s will in the title game and throughout the playoffs.

Or as Naclerio says: “I’d rather be a champ than a chump.”



Sports Star: Robyn Francis, junior guard, Francis Lewis HS girls basketball team

| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre

Follow me @liamlaguerre


Name: Robyn Francis
School: Francis Lewis
Grade: Junior
Sport: Basketball
position: Guard


Robyn is a junior guard on the Francis Lewis High School girls basketball team. Francis scored 8.9 points, grabbed 6.9 rebounds and added 4.4 assists per game this season for the Lady Patriots, and contributed to the team’s recent PSAL Division AA city championship title. Francis is also part of the school’s outdoor track team. In her spare time Francis volunteers to mentor young basketball players around ages 7 to 10 in a local league. She oversees practices and helps with drills.

Off the court and track, Francis maintains a 92 percent average, and has applied to be a member of Arista, the National Honor Society. Her favorite subject is math and she would like to study accounting in college. Although she is not completely sure yet where she will continue her education, St. John’s University in Jamaica is at the top of her list. Francis is also hoping to join the women’s basketball team at St. John’s.

Why is it important to do well both academically and athletically?
“It’s hard, but it’s also worth it. If I can get a half basketball scholarship and a half academic scholarship, that would be great. I want to go to go college for free, and I want to focus on my education.”

Why do you want to major in accounting?
“Because I’m good at math, and I want to do math as a career. Accounting involves math, and it’s a good paying job.”

Why do you like teaching young children to play basketball?
“Since I have a great talent in basketball, I want to share that with others. Also, when I stop playing, I want to see the younger generation playing at a higher level of basketball than me.”

Why would St. John’s University be a good fit for you?
“I think St. John’s is convenient because it’s close to home, it has accounting and I like how the girls [basketball team]plays.”



Lions tear apart Christ the King in Brooklyn/Queens championship

| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Liam La Guerre

Follow me @liamlaguerre 


Bishop Loughlin dominated Christ the King High School boys basketball team in every aspect in the CHSAA Brooklyn/Queens championship on Friday at St. Francis High School.

For the past few years the Loughlin Lions have dropped the final game against their conference rivals. But the Lions, led by senior Khadeen Carrington, were in firm control of the game, powered by revenge.

Carrington, the CSHAA’s Most Valuable Player, scored 42 points in the 90-71 win over Christ the King Royals for the championship. Loughlin senior guard Michael Williams, a Rutgers commit, added 19 points and eight rebounds in the rout.

“We played like we had nothing to lose tonight,” Carrington said. “We played with a chip on our shoulder and we got the W.”

Towards the end of the first half, the Royals made an effort to catch up. Junior forward Travis Atson, who finished with 22 points, knocked down consecutive threes to make the score 43-33.

But Loughlin responded with two threes as well, including a buzzer beater by Darius James at halftime, extending the lead to 49-33 going into the locker room.

The second half was more of the same as the teams traded shots. The Royals weren’t making defensive stops and couldn’t catch up.

Carrington, a Seton Hall commit, may have put an end to Royal’s dreams of a comeback. With just 2:54 remaining in the game he stole the ball and slammed a powerful two-handed dunk, giving Loughlin a 82-59 advantage.

“The bottom line is [Loughlin] played like they  were supposed to,” Christ the King coach Joe Arbitello said. “They played like seven seniors that wanted to win the Brooklyn/ Queens Championship.”

The season isn’t completely over for the Royals. Now the team will head to the citywide tournament match ups, and Arbitello promised the team will pick their heads up for the next round.

“We’re Christ the King, we’re not sinking the ship here,” Arbitello said. “They are going to get our best effort the next time.”




Townsend Harris wins first playoff match against Susan Wagner

| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Liam La Guerre

Follow me @liamlaguerre


The Townsend Harris Hawks girls basketball team started the PSAL Division A girls basketball tournament on a high note.

The three seeded Hawks glided to a 65-53 win over Susan Wagner of Staten Island in its first playoff match on Feb. 14.

Senior captain Sierra Berkel stuffed the stat sheet, finishing with 26 points, 16 rebounds, six steals and three assists, and junior guard Debra Chan added 24 points and five rebounds in the win.

Although the Hawks have finished first in the Queens A West Conference for the past two seasons, they haven’t made it passed the quarter finals round of the city tournament. This year, with another regular season title under their belt, Townsend Harris is hoping to make it count.

“We’re going all the way,” Chan said.

Thought the Hawks were highly favored to win the match, head coach Lauren Caiaccia prepared her team for the unexpected, since they don’t usually play teams from Staten Island.

Caiaccia told her team to be focused and play tough defense.

Towards the end of the third quarter, the Hawks’ defense led to a 44-35 gap, and from there, the team didn’t look back.

Caiaccia attributed this win to her team’s defense prowess, especially that of forwards Bianca Dilan andVasiliki Makris, and guard Natalie Gomez, who put the brakes on the Staten Island team.

“This was a tough match-up, they had more height and size than us,” Caiaccia said. “We strategized well and I think we executed the game plan.”


PSAL Division A Girls Basketball Tournament Queens Round 1 results:

(15) Hillcrest High School defeated (18) Frederick Douglass with a score of 46-40. Next match will be against Mckee Career and Technical High School on Feb. 25 in Round 2.

(27) William C. Bryant lost against (6) Port Richmond, 68-23
(25) Thomas Edison lost to (8) Lehman HS, 47-37.
(16) Benjamin Cardozo lost to (17) DeWitt Clinton, 58-49.
(28) John Bowne lost to (5) Evander Childs, 55-21.
(29) August Martin lost to (4) Canarsie High School, 56-38.

Upcoming Round 1 Matches:

Feb. 24 (22) Forest Hills vs (11) Stuyvesant
Feb. 24 (24) Bayside vs (9) Lab Museum



Christ the King Royals rout Loughlin Lions in rivals rematch

| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Liam La Guerre

Christ the King sophomore Rawle Alkins predicted that his team would defeat league rivals Bishop Loughlin in their Sunday rematch.

The Royals had lost the first match-up against their Brooklyn/Queens AA conference rivals in a close 76-74 game, but Alkins knew the outcome would be different.

“I just felt confident,” Alkins said. “If you look at their team and you look at our team, we have so many mismatches it’s not even funny.”

Alkins prediction came through as the Christ the King Royals dominated the second half, led by senior big man Adonis Delarosa, who had 23 points and 13 rebounds, leading the Royals to a 67-49 blowout of the Loughlin Lions. Alkins added 12 points, 8 rebounds and 6 blocks, and junior forward Travis Atson had 21 points and 11 rebounds to the win.

With the win, Christ the King improved to 18-5 overall (14-3 in conference) taking over the lead from Loughlin, 18-5 overall (13-3 in conference), and secured at least a tie for the regular season title.

The difference in this game was Delarosa, who scored just three points in the first half, but suddenly came alive in the second half.

Being mismatched against smaller sized and less athletic opponents, the nearly 7-foot 265-pound center took advantage of his size to score and get to the foul line, where he shot 11 of 14.

“I just knew they couldn’t guard me,” Delarosa said.

His abilities were fully shown when, with just 1:03 remaining, he wrapped around a defender and slammed a two-handed dunk, causing the crowd to explode as the score became 63-44.

Then the big man sprinted back on defense to swat a layup. Although the block was called goal tending, it sent the crowd into louder cheers of “CK, CK, CK.”

Delarosa’s performance was even more meaningful as he had just come of a two-game suspension for committing a flagrant foul in the previous Loughlin game.

Because he couldn’t play, he had to watch his teammates lose to Archbishop Molloy in their last game, 71-68 in overtime.

“I knew if I was on the court, I would have made a difference,” Delarosa said. “It really hurts watching my guys play from the sidelines.”

The next game for Christ the King will be against Brooklyn Law Tech on Feb. 12.



Campus Magnet routs Edison for coach Charles Granby final home game

| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre

With just under a minute remaining at the Campus Magnet boys basketball home game against Thomas Edison on Thursday, fans starting signing “na na na na, na na na na, hey hey-ey, goodbye.”

It could have been a song of pride as the Bulldogs were on route to rout the Edison Inventors to the tune of 87-48. But it was probably a farewell chant for Bulldogs’ head coach Charles Granby.

After 45 seasons platooning the sidelines for Campus Magnet, Granby is finally leaving the Bulldogs bench. And although the Bulldogs (4-10) didn’t show much bite this year, they barked loudly on Granby’s final home game. Campus Magnet’s top scorer, Nohah Vickers, dropped 54 points and dished 7 assists in the win.

“We just played together today and we were just motivated to give him a big win,” Vickers said. “We just wanted the last home game to be a good one, and a memorable one.”

Granby, 79, started teaching physical education at Campus Magnet in 1969 when it was called Andrew Jackson High School. He remained a teacher until 1996, but continued to coach because of his passion for basketball.

He is the winningest coach in PSAL history with 722 victories. He has taught basketball to thousands of teens over the years, and his teams have won 24 division titles, seven Queens championships and the coveted city title in 1985.

Granby himself played basketball at Bradley University, and was on the team when they won the National Invitational Tournament in 1960.

For his accomplishments, he was inducted in the New York State and New York City basketball hall of fames.

But this year Granby knew it was time.

“I just felt tired,” he said. “I’ve been here 45 years. It’s time to go.”

Despite all the trophies, honors and banners, many of which hang in the rafters of the Bulldogs home gym, what many appreciate is Granby’s mentor style that stretches beyond basketball.

His famed “ugly life” speech—without education everything in your life will be “ugly”— is given to players the day they walk in the gym. And even at his final home game, after fans dispersed and the lights in the gym turned off, Granby gave another lecture to his players.

He preached about the importance of going to college and not relying on basketball. He also told the boys to take care of their children when they become fathers.

Many past players hearing these speeches have experienced success, including Orlando Magic forward Kyle O’Quinn and newly elected Brooklyn City Councilmember Robert Cornegy Jr.

“Dad is a father to everybody,” Granby’s daughter Robyn Granby-Poole said. “He’s not worried about the wins. He’s not thinking about that. He’s thinking about OK now your future is going to rely on (education) make sure you have this because basketball may come to an end.”

Now that basketball is coming to an end for him, Granby plans to relax and travel with his free time.

Granby’s successor hasn’t been named, but he’ll leave a lasting legacy for his replacement to look up to.

“It’s one of those things of who replaces the legendary coach?” said Gareth Robinson, the principal for the PSAL in the school. “For anything they do people who have been around in the community will wonder ‘oh well Granby wouldn’t have done it that way.’”

There will be a retirement party for Granby on April 26 at Jericho Terrace.



PSAL basketball roundup

| hzwillenberg@queenscourier.com

The Bayside Commodores improved to 5-0 by beating the Forest Hills Rangers (0-4) by a score of 85-65. Senior Austin Williams led the way for the Commodores scoring 29 points. Senior Cantrell Barker scored 18 points. Senior Gagandeep had a double-double with 16 points and 13 rebounds. Junior Daqauise Andrews scored 14 points. Next up for the Commodores will be the Benjamin Cardozo Judges (3-0).

In their last game, the Thomas Edison Engineers (3-2) beat the Flushing High School Red Devils (1-2) 67-29. For the Engineers, senior Jaleel Charles had a double-double, scoring 19 points while pulling down 14 rebounds. Senior Nosike Obanya scored 19 points as well. Junior Jediah Greene scored 12 points while dishing out five assists. For the Red Devils, not one player reached double figures; sophomore Shahiem Greene led the team with eight points. Next up or the Engineers will be the Rangers.

The John Adams Spartans (3-1) lost their last game to the Pathways College Prep Trailblazers (3-1) by a score of 85-55. For the Trailblazers, senior Sam Annorh Jr. had a game-high 30 points. Junior Izaha Jackson added 18 points while pulling down seven rebounds. Senior Jamel Holmes scored 15 points to go along with nine boards. Senior Romario Fletcher had a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds. For the Spartans, senior Markell French scored 17 points, pulled down nine rebounds and dished out six assists. Senior Ahmed Kone was the only other Spartan to score in double figures with 11 points. Next up for the Spartans will be the Grover Cleveland Beavers (0-3).

The Campus Magnet Bull-Dogs (2-2) beat the Martin Van Buren Vee Bees (0-4) by a score of 54-46. Junior Noah Vickers led the Bull-Dogs with 17 points. Senior Tyrell Fields was second on the team with 15 points. Senior Alton Bennett scored 11 points and had a team-high seven rebounds. For the Vee Bees senior Trevor Newman led the team with 15 points. Senior Brian Agard was second on the team with 14 points while senior Miles Banks had a game high 12 rebounds.


PSAL basketball roundup

| hzwillenberg@queenscourier.com

The John Adams Spartans (1-0) beat the Richmond Hill Lions (0-1) in the first game of the season by a score of 66-45. The Spartans who outscored the Lions in each of the first three quarters, road the strength of their incredible start. The Spartans shutout the Lions 15-0 in the first quarter. Senior Ahmed Kone led the Spartans with a double-double scoring 17 points while grabbing 15 rebounds. Senior Markell French recorded a double-double as well, scoring 13 points and dishing out 11 assists while also pulling down six rebounds. Seniors Simeon Hall and Ishmael Nausrudeen added 10 points each. The Lions were led by junior Kevin Baksh who scored 17 points. The only other player in double figures was senior Paramvir Singh with 12 points. The Spartans will play the Hillcrest Hawks in their next matchup.

The Bayside Commodores (1-0) beat the Thomas Edison Engineers (0-1) by a score of 69-57. For the Commodores senior Cantrell Barker led the team with 22 points. Junior Daquise Andrews added 19 points to go along with six rebounds. Senior Austin Williams scored 12 points while senior Brandon King scored 10. Next up for the Commodores will be the Flushing High School Red Devils.

The Campus Magnet Bull-Dogs (1-0) bested the Forest Hills Rangers (0-1) 65-50. Junior Nohah Vickers led the Bull-Dogs with 25 points. Senior Tyrell Fields scored 16 points while Sophomore Ramel Powers added 10. Next up for the Bull-Dogs will be the Engineers.

The Springfield Golden Eagles (1-0) beat the Pathways College Prep Trailblazers (0-1) by a score of 61-57. The Golden Eagles found themselves down at halftime by a score of 30-19. The Golden Eagles then went on a tear in the third quarter outscoring the Trailblazers by a score of 23-6. The Golden Eagles were led by junior Dupree McBrayer who had 20 points to go along with eight rebounds and seven assists. Juniors Jason Deochan and Tyree Lynch had 16 and 11 points, respectively. For the Trailblazers senior Sam Annorh Jr. led the team with 18 points. Sophomore Noel King Wicks scored 12 points to go along with his eight rebounds. The Trailblazers will play the High School For Construction Red Hawks in their next game.

Cardozo wins Queens basketball title

| smosco@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Steve Mosco

The Benjamin Cardozo Judges continued their winning ways in Queens, defeating the Long Island City Bulldogs, 69-58, to capture the borough championship at York College on Saturday, February 11.

The victory was the Judges’ third Queens championship win in as many years, this time led by senior Tajay Henry’s 21 points and 10 rebounds. The towering forward drilled many key baskets, including a dramatic dunk as time, and the game, slipped away from the Bulldogs.

Cardozo led the contest from beginning to end and seemed on the verge of blowing out L.I.C. as they took a 51-36 lead late in the game. However, the Bulldogs were able to hang tough, cutting the deficit to just four points late in the final quarter.

And they might have won the game too, if not for Cardozo junior Kyle Credle. The 5-foot-10-inch guard scored seven of his 10 points in the fourth, nailing a crucial three-pointer that all but sealed the deal with under one minute remaining and gave the Judges the championship. Rounding out the scoring for Cardozo were senior Rasheed Robinson with 13 points and eight rebounds and senior Ryan Yearwood with nine points and eight rebounds.

The Bulldogs, who upset top-seeded Bayside High School in the team’s prior series and was the only team from the Queens ‘A’ division to reach the borough playoffs, managed to stay in the game behind seniors Sadji Camara and Arthur Santanna who each scored 17 points in the loss. In the upset win over Bayside, L.I.C. was led by senior Xavier Jones with 18 points, while Santanna and Camara scored 15 and 14 points, respectively.

Next up for the Judges is the Public School Athletic League (PSAL) class ‘AA’ playoffs, in which the school grabbed the fifth seed. Games start this week and the finals will be played at Madison Square Garden on March 17. It’s not over for L.I.C., as the Bulldogs will compete in the PSAL’s class ‘A’ playoffs, culminating with the finals on March 18.

High School Basketball Roundup

| hzwillenberg@queenscourier.com

The Springfield Gardens Golden Eagles (11-2) beat the Franklin K. Lane Knights (4-9) by a score of 52-46. For the Knights, senior Kalil Johnson led the team with 16 points. Three Knights’ players scores eight points and junior Eugene Thwaites Jr. almost achieved a triple-double with eight points, 10 rebounds and seven assists. Senior Gaoussou Sissoko scored eight points while grabbing seven rebounds, while freshman Natanael Carrasco scored eight points as well. While senior Denzel Morgan scored just four points, he was able to grab 10 rebounds. The Golden Eagles will round out the regular season against the Hilcrest Hawks (3-10).

The Hawks lost their last game to the High School for Construction Red Hawks (10-3) by a score of 69-48. For the Red Hawks, senior Rudranauth Sewsankar led the team with 22 points. Senior Ehiavekhan Eromoselle had a double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds. Senior Kareem Stowe fell two rebounds shy of a double-double with 10 points and eight rebounds. Junior Alexis Rincon chipped in with nine points while senior O’Shane Beckford was only able to score three points while dishing out seven assists.

The John Adams Spartans (10-3) beat the Grover Cleveland Tigers (4-9) by a score of 80-38. Junior Markell French led the Spartans with a triple-double, scoring 19 points while pulling down 12 rebounds and dishing out 13 assists. Senior Shane Hubbard is proving he can play more than one sport as the football star scored 13 points while grabbing three rebounds. Junior Shmael Nausrudeen was third on the team with 12 points. Junior Justin Cotto scored 10 points while pulling down eight rebounds. Junior Ahmed Kone scored seven points while grabbing nine rebounds. The Spartans will end the season on the road against the Richmond Hill Lions (3-10).

In their last game, the Lions lost to the Far Rockaway Sea Horses (7-6) by a score of 70-43. Junior Tyrelle Gordon led the Sea Horses with 18 points and senior Warren Saylor Jr. was a close second with 17 points. Senior Jarren Oliver-Moore pitched in with 11 points. Junior Shaleek Saunders scored eight points while Junior Malik Stewart scored five points and had a team leading 11 rebounds. The Sea Horses will finish the season against the Tigers.

Up the Courts

| hzwillenberg@queenscourier.com

The Bayside Commodores (10-2) beat the Beach Channel Dolphins (7-5) by a score of 67-61. For the Commodores, junior Brandon King led all scorers with 30 points, while senior Ryan Tomlin, who is only averaging seven points a game for the season, was second on the team with 21 points. Senior Uzonna Akazi had a double-double with 12 points and 14 rebounds. Sophomore Daqause Andrews only scored one point, but managed to dish out 10 assists while pulling down eight rebounds. For the Dolphins, senior Semaj Smith led the team with 25 points, while senior Ismail Abdullah was one rebound shy of a double-double with 19 points and nine rebounds. Senior George Palmer chipped in with 15 points. Next up for the Commodores will be the Benjamin Cardozo Judges (11-1).

The Judges beat the Campus Magnet Bull Dogs (9-3) by a score of 78-56. For the Judges, senior Ryan Yearwood had a double-double, leading all scorers with 19 points and tying for the team lead in rebounds with 11. Senior Daniel Janel had a double-double as well, with 12 points and 11 rebounds. Junior Omar Williams had 10 points and seven assists. For the Bull Dogs, senior Grequan Carter led the team with 16 points, while senior Tarik Raynor was second on the team with 15 points. Senior Samuel Durodola chipped in with 13 points while pulling down seven rebounds. Next up for the Bull Dogs will be the Forest Hills Rangers (4-8).

In their last game, the Rangers beat the Flushing Red Devils (0-12) by a score of 64-57. For the Rangers, senior Arif Mehmetaj had a double-double, leading the team in scoring with 26 points and tying for the team lead in rebounds with 18. Senior Shamoy Allen had a double-double as well, with 14 points and 13 rebounds. Senior Damien Jackson was tied with Mehmetaj with 18 rebounds while chipping in with 10 points.

The John Adams Spartans (9-3) beat the Franklin K. Lane Knights (4-8) by a score of 39-21. For the Spartans, Junior Markell French led the team with 12 points, while coming up second on the team in rebounds with six. Junior Paul Johnson was second on the team with 11 points. Junior Justin Cotto was third on the team with seven points, while senior Shane Hubbard scored six points while leading the team with seven rebounds. Next up for the Spartans will be the Grover Cleveland Tigers (4-8).