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Boys’ Basketball Wins Rematch with Southold

January 18, 2011

The last time the boys basketball team stepped onto the floor with Southold was February 20, 2010 in the Class C County Championship.  The Bears pulled out an electrifying win against the undefeated Settlers, 50-48, on a dagger by Tim Pandolfi with 20 seconds remaining in the game.  In the 332 days since that incredible upset win, our east end rivals have no doubt salivated at the thought of playing us again.  They got their wish tonight, but the script remaining unchanged as the Bears pulled out a gritty 44-40 win in enemy territory to improve to 4-0 in League VIII.  Tim Pandolfi was keyed on by a rowdy student section from the beginning as, “Pandolfi!  Go home!,” rang out multiple times from the Southold delegation.  Pandolfi would return home, but not before torching his hosts for 29 points to lift his scoring average to 28 points per game, good enough for 1st on Long Island.

In the early moments of the game the Bears had difficulty matching the urgency of Southold.  They were tentative on both sides of the ball and quickly fell behind 0-4.  2 free throws by Marco Masakayan and a very difficult, double-clutch jumper by Pandolfi tied the score at 4, but Southold responded with 5 straight points to signal they were going to put up a fight.  Pandolfi capped the quarter with a score to make it 6-9 after one.  The tenacity of Southold forced the Brook into sloppy possessions.  They settled for 3-pointers, which were not going down, they could not buy a layup inside and they allowed scrappy but undersized guards to get rebounds.

Things began to change in the 2nd frame; however, as Pandolfi began to find his rhythm and the defense ratcheted up its aggressiveness.  The blue and white began the frame with a 7-0 run behind a 3-pointer and layup by Pandolfi and a tough layup by Jerome Washington.  They extended their lead to 16-11 after a steal and fast break layup by Pandolfi, but the Settlers closed on a 6-2 run to cut the Bears edge down to 18-17 at the break.

The Bears won the 3rd quarter 13-7 to give them a 7 point edge entering the final frame, but Southold, characteristically, fought back.  In the waning moments the Brook clung to a 3 point advantage and a free throw pushed the lead out to 4, sealing the win.  The Brook made it difficult on themselves by going 9 for 22 from the free throw line in the game, but clutch shooting by Pandolfi, who scored 15 of the team’s 26 2nd half points, and lockdown defense helped pull out an important win.  Two unsung heroes in the game were Richie Armand and Kai Strachan.  Their task was to curtail Southold’s most potent offensive threat, Winston Wilcenski, who entering the game he was tied for 4th on Long Island in scoring with 25.1 per game.  On 2 occasions already this season he had scored 39 points, hitting 9 3-pointers against Shelter Island and 8 against Westhampton.  All Armand and Strachan did was limit him to 1 3-pointer, 1 2-point field goal and 6 free throws for 11 points as they relentlessly hounded him whether he had the ball or not.

Southold with an early 1-point lead, but here comes Tim Pandolfi.  This man is the leading scorer on Long Island, we’re talkin’ public, independent, catholic; Tim Pandolfi is outscoring everybody!

~ Video highlight from MSG Varsity’s SportsDesk

Impressions

Earlier in the week coach Mike Hickey told his players this would be a “statement game” and the Bears came through with an important win in the scope of League VIII.  It was not a pretty win by any means, but it showed we can get into a slugfest with a tough team and be the one standing at the end.  The victory also helped them stay undefeated in the league along with Greenport (6-0) to set up a big showdown with the Porters this Thursday @ 4:30pm.

Notes

The victory was the 228th of coach Mike Hickey’s career as he improved to 19-10 all-time vs. Southold… Tim Pandolfi is now just 51 points away from the 1,000 point milestone… The junior varsity also defeated Southold 65-20… On this day in 1978 the boys basketball team won a close game, 75-73, at Southold… Check out Newsday’s article on the game… Check out the MSG Varsity highlight video.

Box Score

  • Pandolfi | 29 points/4 3-pointers
  • Masakayan | 5 points/1 3-pointer
  • Washington | 4 points
  • Strachan | 4 points
  • Farqu Taylor | 3 points

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