Brian Cleary had 20 points, none bigger than a three-point play with 57 seconds left, that helped Frontier hand Williamsville North its first loss in ECIC I, 69-67, on Friday night. It was Cleary's only basket of the second half.
Jamie Pike hit two free throws for the final margin of victory as the Falcons improved to 6-3, 2-3. Darius Edwards equaled his season high with 21 points, six assists and six rebounds. Matt Taylor had five blocked shots, including one with three seconds left. He also grabbed 10 rebounds.
"North led us, 9-0, at the start," said coach Gary Domzalski. "We're playing an undefeated team, their confidence was sky high. We called a timeout and had to made a decision to keeping playing or shake their hands right now. I was proud how they chipped away."
East Aurora upset Cheektowaga, 51-50, in ECIC II with a big fourth quarter. The Blue Devils held a much bigger Cheektowaga to zero offensive rebounds in the fourth quarter, which coach Chris Koselny said was the key.
"We had two great practices the last two days," Koselny said. "That really gave us an opportunity to put together a great game plan. And I give all the credit to the kids because they executed it."
The Blue Devils (3-7, 3-4) neutralized the size of Cheektowaga (7-2, 4-2) and senior Jameson Arnold had a huge night with 22 points, six steals and four assists. For Cheektowaga, Aswad Jones scored 13 points and Jordan Green had 11.
East Aurora outscored Cheektowaga, 15-11, in the fourth. Chris Bourne hit a pair of big free throws with about 20 seconds left. And Arnold's steal on the last possession sealed the win.
"Cheektowaga is going to be very good," Koselny said. "I would not be surprised to see them make a nice run at the A's [during playoffs]. Hopefully we can do the same."
Kenmore West wanted one-win North Tonawanda to fire away from deep. Mike Meetze's scouting report said that the Jacks struggled from behind the arc.
Unfortunately for West, NT kept making its three-pointers. With a barrage of three-pointers, North Tonawanda posed problems all night. But in the end, Kenmore West prevailed, 57-56.
Senior Ryan Grandits scored the game-winner with three seconds left, slicing through three North Tonawanda defenders off a screen and converting the layup. Grandits finished with a game-high 20 points for Kenmore West, 6-2 overall, 4-2 in the Niagara Frontier league.
"We tried to get the ball in our best player's hands," Kenmore West coach Mike Meetze said. "He scored 13 of his 20 points when they had a box-and-one on him."
With eight three-pointers in the first three quarters, North Tonawanda (1-7, 1-5) mustered plenty of momentum. The Jacks also were 17 of 25 at the free-throw line and hit buzzer-beaters to end the first and second quarters. Joseph Montesanti scored 15 points.
Niagara Falls has four players averaging in double figures and a bench boltered by a recent junior varsity callup. They all came together on Friday night to beat Lockport, 71-46, in a Niagara Frontier League game.
Marcus Feagin had 20 points and 12 rebounds. Jaleo Wilkins added 11 points and Jordan Street chipped in with 10 points and 14 rebounds as the No. 1 large school Wolverines improved to 9-0 overall, 6-0 in the NFL.
"We came out with a lot of energy tonight," said coach Sal Constantino, whose team had a 29-point first quarter. "We really got into our transition game. We did find a little foul trouble with our guards, but JV callup Burton Ramir has done a nice job. He kept us in our offense and was getting the big guys the ball."
Ramir was 5 of 5 from the free throw line.
A monster night from Ryan Whelpley keyed Walsh (9-3, 2-1) to a 75-56 win over St. Francis in the Monsignor Martin Association. The senior scored 27 points, grabbed 16 rebounds and dished out four assists as the Eagles raced out to a 21-7 first-quarter lead. The Eagles also got big games from Marcus Clarke (19 points) and Deon Gayton (18 points).