On this day 12 years ago, the boys’ basketball team made coach Mike Hickey’s birthday a little sweeter by winning the Suffolk County Class C/D Championship over Greenport. Here is a pair of recaps from Newsday and the North Shore Sun.
Pandolfi‘s 17 Points Push Stony Brook Past Greenport
Bob Herzog — Newsday
It’s not a stretch to say that when Tim Pandolfi of the Stony Brook School starts cooking from the perimeter, he’s hot as a pistol. After all, he learned to shoot from the original Pistol Pete.
“When I was an eighth grader, I always drove. I wasn’t strong enough so I used two hands and kind of pushed my outside shots,” said Pandolfi, demonstrating what looked like an old-fashioned two-handed set shot. “So I checked out some Pete Maravich tapes from the library. He showed me that this [his off hand] is just a guide.”
Pandolfi doesn’t wear droopy socks or dribble behind his back, but he’s an example of the legacy of Pistol Pete. The junior guard, a three-year starter, sank four three-pointers and scored 17 points to lead Suffolk Class C champion Stony Brook to a 48-37 victory over Class D champion Greenport last night in the first game of a doubleheader at Longwood.
The Bears (13-3) will take on Wyandanch, which defeated Center Moriches last night, in the Suffolk B/C/D game Sunday at Farmingdale State. They also will face Nassau Class C champion Friends Academy on March 9 at Bay Shore on the road to Glens Falls.
Greenport (13-7), which got 21 points from Dantre Langhorne, is still alive for a return trip upstate. The Porters face the Section IX winner on March 10 at Center Moriches. But last night was all about the continued development of Pandolfi.
“Every year he gets better,” Stony Brook coach Mike Hickey said.
“I’ve been coaching 24 years and he has progressed as much as any player I’ve had. He’s a gym rat.”
A rat with a venomous touch if you’re trying to defend him.
“He’s an outstanding shooter. He’s the go-to guy and everyone knows it,” Hickey said. “He’s also very savvy. He knows when to take control of the game himself and when to give it up.”
That was clear against Greenport. In the first half, he was able to work himself free on the outside and scored 12 points as the teams battled to a 21-all halftime score. Pandolfi scored only one basket in the second half — a big three-pointer that gave the Bears a 30-27 lead they never relinquished.
Because the Porters concentrated on him, that left Jovan George open underneath and the team’s big man delivered eight of his 16 points in the fourth quarter as Stony Brook pulled away.
“In the preseason, we scrimmaged some [Class] A and AA teams,” Hickey said. “To a man, every coach came up to me and said, ‘Who is that guy?’ “
The answer is obvious now. He’s Stony Brook’s top gun.
Stony Brook Outmuscles Greenport in C/D Game
Jake Williams — North Shore Sun
There was never much doubt Wednesday night as to whether or not Greenport’s Dantre Langhorne and The Stony Brook School’s Tim Pandolfi would produce some offensive fireworks. The question to be answered during the Suffolk County Class C/D game was whose teammates would help ease the load for their team’s top scorers.
Langhorne averaged 22 points per game for the county Class D champion Porters while Pandolfi averaged 21 for the Class C Bears.
For the Bears in their 48-37 win at Longwood High School, that player was Jovan George, who averaged 8.9 points per game in the regular season. He added 18 points to Pandolfi’s team-high 20. Most of George’s points came by way of the offensive glass.
“I just see the ball and try my best to go get it,” George said.
Watching the Bears (13-3) outmuscle the Porters (13-7) at Stony Brook’s offensive end frustrated Greenport Coach Al Edwards. “We can’t win like that, especially in a playoff situation,” he said.
George and Pandolfi’s combined point total was enough to outscore the Porters, who found very little in the way of scoring aside from Langhorne’s game-high 21 points.
“He’s a real good player,” George said. “Last time he gave us a lot of trouble.”
Langhorne did again this time, but the rest of the Porters put up just 14 points, led by Jalen Shelby’s seven. To win in the state tournament, Edwards said, the team will need a more balanced offensive attack like it did in its county final victory against the Bridgehampton Killer Bees. In that game Shelby led the team with 20 points. Teddy Stevens (11) and Tremayne Hansen (10) were also in double figures.
This time around, Hansen scored four. Meanwhile, Stevens never found his shooting touch, going 0-for-6 from 3-point range, and finishing with two points.
There was little the Porters could do on the other end to alter Pandolfi’s shooting touch. He hit five 3-pointers in the Bears’ county final defeat of the Southold First Settlers, including the game-winner from about 35 feet.
The Porters showed respect for Pandolfi’s shooting range, even aggressively jumping out to contest him when he head faked beyond the 3-point line. But no matter how closely they followed Pandolfi this time, they could not keep him from shooting. Once again, Pandolfi knocked down five 3-pointers. The 50 to 100 three-pointers he takes during practice all season have finally started to pay off.
“For whatever reason, maybe guys were keying on him more this year, his shots just weren’t [going] down,” Stony Brook coach Mike Hickey said. “Obviously, confidence is a big key. Sometimes you think, what’s wrong? Nothing’s wrong. Keep shooting. It’s going to go down.”
Heading into the third quarter, with the score tied at 21-21, the Bears made an immediate run, scoring six unanswered points in 67 seconds. It took Langhorne 2:19 to match that and knot the score again. But then Pandolfi’s range came into play again.
A head fake gave Pandolfi some space on the left wing for a 3-pointer to put the Bears up for good, 30-27. He could ease up a little after that, and for good reason. The Bears, without benefit of another Pandolfi basket, went on a 9-2 run to finish the third quarter and start the fourth. With 6:28 left in the game, the Bears were ahead by 39-29. The Porters did not get closer than six the rest of the way.
“We’ll just try to regroup and hopefully we can get a good game in the states,” Edwards said. “We’ve got to play much better than we did.”
The Bears will not have a long layoff before playing again. They will meet the Suffolk Class B champion, the Wyandanch Warriors or the Center Moriches Red Devils, in the next round of the Section XI tournament on Sunday afternoon at Farmingdale State. Stony Brook will play Friends Academy in the regional semifinals on March 9 at Bay Shore High School.