Boys basketball Bees top RFA, advance to sectional final

first_imgSo instead of a showdown with the Wildcats, it was the Bees against the Black Knights in Sunday’s AA semifinal at SRC Arena, the Bees eager to avenge a 63-61, last-second defeat to RFA on Jan. 20.And it did so, prevailing 74-55 in a game that featured plenty of sophomore sensation J.J. Starling, but also a fine effort from the guys around him.Just like every other opponent this season, the Black Knights were bent on quieting Starling, which it did in the first quarter after he hit an opening-minute 3-pointer. But senior forward Bo Nicholson made up for it by pouring in 10 points to stake the Bees to an 18-13 lead. That margin grew to 28-19 midway through the second quarter despite just two field goals from Starling. Gradually, RFA cut the margin to two, but baskets by Starling and Braden McCard extended the Bees’ advantage to 32-26 going to the break.With neither team able to put together a run, Starling went to work midway through the third quarter, starting with a powerful dunk from the baseline and a 3-pointer from the top of the circle.Even more damaging was the 11-0 run that bridged the third and fourth periods, started by a Starling 3-pointer and culminating with Ben Bifulco converting from long range that made it 58-40, far too much for RFA to overcome.Nicholson finished with 22 points and 12 rebounds to complement Starling’s 31 points and 10 rebounds as Chase Trombley had seven points and Dan Fabrizio got six points.B’ville shot 54 percent (27-for-50) from the field, including 11-for-22 from 3-point range as it also out-rebounded the Black Knights 33-25. Damien Call led the Black Knights with 22 points as he became that school’s all-time leading scorer.Now it’s the Bees against Corcoran, who is seeking its first sectional title since 2000. Those two teams split their regular-season meetings, with the Cougars’ De’Jour Reaves having netted 30 points of his own in his team’s semifinal win over Bishop Ludden.Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story For much of its history, the Baldwinsville boys basketball team has not come close to the sort of exalted status it is experiencing this season.Now the heights, and the stakes, are far bigger as on Saturday night at SRC Arena, the Bees will seek the Section III Class AA championship when it takes on the Corcoran Cougars.All of it started with last Tuesday’s wild turn of events in the sectional quarterfinal round. B’ville, the no. 4 seed, handled Auburn 78-44, then watched as top seed and defending state champion West Genesee was stunned by no. 9 seed Rome Free Academy.last_img read more

Beat writers predict winner in Syracuse-Florida State matchup

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on November 17, 2016 at 10:59 pm Syracuse (4-6, 2-4 Atlantic Coast) takes on No. 17 Florida State (7-3, 4-3) on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. The Orange faces Dalvin Cook, who is regarded as one of the best running backs in the country. Check out how our beat writers think the matchup will unfold.Tomer Langer (4-3)GutterballFlorida State 35, Syracuse 17A month ago, this seemed like an interesting game that Syracuse, although still an underdog, would have a chance in. Florida State was coming off an incredibly unconvincing 17-6 win to Wake Forest (after a one-point victory against Miami and a stretch where it lost two of its four games), and Syracuse was coming off its best regular season win in program history with a team flying high. That all came crashing down to earth with Eric Dungey’s injury against Clemson. With him unlikely to play, it’ll be hard for SU to compete in this game that pushes them almost completely out of bowl contention.Chris Libonati (8-2)Dalvin Cook-edFlorida State 34, Syracuse 13The last time I predicted the No. 17 team in the country to beat Syracuse, the Orange upset Virginia Tech. What do I know? I do think this is a bit different, though. Zaire Franklin called Dalvin Cook the best running back in the country and I agree. Deondre Francois has been solid. I just don’t think the SU defense will suppress the Florida State offense.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textJon Mettus (8-2)Early FeastFlorida State 43, Syracuse 13The No. 17 team in the country is coming to the Carrier Dome, but don’t expect fans to stream onto the field after the game like when SU topped Virginia Tech earlier this year. Syracuse is undersized, undermanned and overmatched. Dino Babers said he “hope(s)” SU can win. And that’s all it’ll be: a hope. Cook and company are just too good for a Zack Mahoney-led squad to knock off. Commentslast_img read more