Everything seems to be coming together for the South Park boys basketball team.
The Sparks followed up Tuesday’s 74-61 win at Middle College with a 63-54 triumph over visiting McKinley Friday night to keep coach Peter Hudecki’s squad right in the thick of the four-team race for the Yale Cup I title.
Down after one quarter, 10-9, South Park took a 20-19 lead at the half and extended it to 37-33 heading into the final frame.
“We’re peaking at the right time and guys are sharing the ball, playing with each other,” Hudecki said. “We’re playing really, really good defense. Every game we keep getting better.”
South Park’s David Stroud, a 6-foot-4 junior, dominated the Macks in the post. He scored a game-high 21 points, grabbed 17 rebounds and blocked seven shots.
“He shut out any ability to penetrate,” Hudecki said. “It was difficult for them to get inside. All our bigs did a good job shutting off the middle.”
Sophomore point guard Anthony Mack played a poised game for the Sparks, adding 14 points, six assists and six steals.
“Early in the season we were doing some high-risk stuff,” Hudecki said. “Now we’re controlling the tempo of the game.”
Sophomore Ngendabanyikwa Elias led McKinley (12-4, 8-3) with 14 points, including a pair of three-pointers.
Middle College (11-5, 8-2) and East (11-4, 9-2) remained at two losses in league play with wins Friday. The Panthers host the Kats this coming Tuesday, and East visits South Park (9-7, 8-3) on Feb. 13 in a game that could decide the division crown.
Maryvale 58, Iroquois 33: Flyers coach Mark Kensy picked up his 400th win in his 33rd year at the school in convincing fashion.
Three players scored in double figures for Maryvale, which stormed out to an 18-2 lead after one quarter. Ray Blackwell had 18 points, and Dylan Casey and Mark Bailey each added 10.
Franklinville 75, Forestville 33: Seniors Isaac Kopp and Darren Clark both surpassed 1,000 career points for the Panthers by scoring 21 and 19 points, respectively.
Both achieved the milestone on three-point baskets. Kopp’s came on his first shot in the third quarter, and Clark’s came in the fourth.
Health Sciences 90, WNY Maritime 46: Davonte Gaines of Health Sciences tuned up for today’s Centercourt Classic showcase at Williamsville South by recording his third quadruple-double of the season Thursday night in the Falcons’ win.
Gaines finished with 30 points, 13 rebounds, 12 assists and 10 steals for Health Sciences, The News’ top-ranked small school. The Falcons face Williamsville South at 6 p.m. today to cap the four-game Centercourt Classic.
The event begins at noon with Franklinville taking on Medina. The 2 p.m. game pits Newfane against Ellicottville. The 4 p.m. clash features St. Mary’s against East.
No. 4 small school Newfane pulled away from honorable mention large school Lockport with a 19-8 fourth quarter during a 50-41 nonleague win at home.
The Panthers (15-1) were down 24-18 at half and 33-31 after three quarters.
“We stayed relaxed and the pressure got to them as we took over in the second half,” Newfane coach Kevin Klumpp said.
Eighteen of Panthers senior Paige Emborsky’s game-high 20 points came from beyond the arc, while classmates Emily Geer (eight points) and Kayleigh Daniels (six points) made big contributions off the bench. Daniels, Geer and Emily Foltz (eight points) all had four points down the stretch.
The Lions (11-4) were led by Elizabeth Mullane’s 15 points.
Orchard Park 4, Williamsville North 3 (OT): Liam McGowan’s game-winning goal with 3:54 left in overtime handed the Spartans their first defeat of the season.
“Kyle Flynn started the breakout wide on the ice, moved to the middle and had a nice shot on goal,” OP coach Josh Dannecker said. “Liam streaked in and was able to bury the rebound. ... It’s been a while since we beat them. They’re a great team. Give them a lot of credit, but it’s a huge win for us.”
McGowan also had two assists on the game. Jimmy Doran scored the first two goals for the Quakers, and Coleman Jacobs tied the game at 3-3 with 2:09 left to play in the third period.
Senior Grant Zell made 39 saves for the win.
“He was just fantastic in net,” Dannecker said.
Sweet Home 3, I-Rye 2: The Panthers, the state’s No. 1-ranked team in Division 2, took a 3-0 lead in the first period and held on for a win at the Lake Placid Tournament. Tyler Edholm’s assist on the third goal of the game gives him 107 career points, which is now second all-time in program history. Sweet Home plays in the championship game at 2:30 p.m. Saturday.