Park, ranked No. 1 among Western New York large schools needed 29 points by Noah Hutchins and some clutch shooting and defense in overtime to avert an upset home at the hands of St. Francis.
Hutchins went over the 1,000-point mark for his career and made two steal in the final minute of overtime and Jai’den Dunn hit a crucial 3-pointer in the extra period in Park’s 80-79 victory over the Red Raiders. Hutchins finished the game with 1,012 career points
Hutchins had 20 of his points after the first half as the Pioneers improved to 8-1 on the season. St. Francis, ranked No. 3 in the WNY poll, fell to 7-3. Dunn hit a three in the overtime to put Park in front for good, 77-74.
The game was tied at 72 after regulation. St. Francis took a 58-57 lead into the fourth quarter after Peyton Consigli hit a 3-pointer with 0:09 left in the period.
"It was everything we expected," said Park coach Rich Jacobs said of the tough game his team had against the Red Raiders. "It was no surprise. We just to rise to the level they were playing at.
"It’s time for us to get better on defense, though," Jacob added. "They had multiple scorers and they shot well."
Park’s Caleb Hutchins had 15 points, including three 3-pointers, Ebuka Quentin Nnagbo had 12 points and 11 rebounds and Keonjay Carter had 14 points. Dunn had five points,
Senior Justin Poumpey scored 18 of his 22 points from 3-point range for St. Francis. David Bartholemew had 16 points and senior Dorion Ivey 14 and Lucas Theisen 12 for the Raiders.
The return game between the Monsignor Martin Association teams will be next Wedneday (Jan. 16) in Athol Springs.
Park’s only loss was to California athletics power, Long Beach Poly, 70-61, in the King Cotton Classic in Pine Bluff, Ark. last month.
Hemphill sets O’Hara mark
Justin Hemphill broke the Cardinal O’Hara career scoring record as he pumpedhome a career-high 43 points for the Hawks in a 94-63 over visiting Bishop Timon-St. Jude. Hemphill, a senior, has 1,443 points in his O’Hara career, breaking the record of 1,442 set by James Ewing (2008).
Hemphill came out of the game with 30 seconds to go after he set the career mark.
"We wanted him to do it at home because we don’t have a home game for a while," said Hawks coach Tony Pulvirenti, who team is 11-0.
MST Seneca tops Olmsted
MST Seneca took over in the second half in a game that was tied at halftime and handed Olmsted a 75-51 defeat in Yale Cup League II. It was the first league loss for the Owls (6-1). Seneca is 5-1 in the league.
The game was tied at 30-all at halftime, but senior Earl Howard and junior Davante Simmons led the second half charge for the Indians. Howard had 21 of his 30 points in the second half and had 10 rebounds, five blocks and five steals.
Simmons had all 13 of his points in the second half.
"Howard is a guard who plays hard, plays the game the right way and keeps working every day and is getting better and better," said Seneca coach Scott Kirsch.
"We turned up our defense and got things going in the second half," Kirsch said. "Simmons got us turnovers and steals and everybody fed off him for a while."
City Honors defeated Riverside, 85-57, with Jaden Slaughter (18) leading five double-digure scorers. The Centaurs lead Yale Cup II with an 8-0 division record.
Middle Early College handed South Park its first loss in Yale Cup League I, holding off the Sparks in the final quarter for a 55-50 win.
Devonte Prince had 19 points and Jamond Jones 16 to lead the Kats.
Clarence wins in ECIC I
In ECIC I, Clarence had four double-digit scorers in a 68-60 win at Frontier, overcoming a 24-point performance by Brandon Dunz of the Falcons.
Peyton Metzger (18), River Reinhardt (15), Jack Putney (14) and Zach Ianello (10) led the victory for the Red Devils, who led by only two points going into the final quarter.
Jacob Belote led the way with 24 points as Williamsville North held on to its half-game lead over Clarence in ECIC I with a 75-51 win at Orchard Park.
Sophomore Jalen Bradberry of Niagara Falls scored 40 points, hitting 11 3-pointers, and went over the 1,000-point mark for his career at three different schools as the Wolverines routed Kenmore East, 108-32.
Silver Creek’s Brady Woleben scored his 1,000th career point in a 68-42 win over Salamanca in CCAA East I.
Emerson girls win
Emerson barely withstood a 34-point performance by Kyra Wood of City Honors and remained undefeated in Canisius Cup girls basketball among Buffalo Public Schools teams with a 54-53 win over the Centaurs. Nautaca Weatherspoon led the winning Eagles with 24 points.
Big scores for WSW bowlers
West Seneca West bowlers Noah Tojek and Spencer Guise both hit career highs on Monday in the Indians’ 6-1 victory over rival West Seneca East in ECIC South Large School league bowling at Wimbledon Lanes.
Tojek had a 278 game in a 741 series. Spencer Guise shot a 289 in a 711 series as WSW improved to 4-2 in league matches.
CCA to induct three
Christian Central Academy will induct three new members to its Sports Hall of Fame on at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 9 in the Emannuel Gym. The inductees will be: Zydrunas Stankus (class of ‘98, basketball), Faye-Lyne Noel (‘10, soccer) and Austin Tom (‘11, soccer.)