NEW YORK, NY - Not every game in Saturday's Big Apple Basketball Invitational line-up was a barn burner, a Kris Dunn-like takeover, or a Ta'jay Henry-like heroic display of will.
The earlier games involving New York teams featured a show of utter dominance and a low-scoring loss.
Wings Academy Steamrolls Roberts Vaux, 71-40
Despite trash talk and rough, physical play from the opening tip, this one never brought spectators out of recliner mode. The Philly-based Vaux Cougars made it a game for about six minutes, as James Cole's (8 points) deep corner threes balanced the scoreboard against the paint-patrolling efforts of Wings big man, Damien Davis (11 points). Vaux matched Wings' defensive intensity early on, but simply couldn't find scoring candidates at the end of the first quarter - that allowed senior guards Jaequan Brown (11 points) and Justin Jenkins to press the pedal and give Wings a 20-11 advantage going into the second quarter.
Highly-touted floor general Rysheed Jordan changed from facilitator to scorer when Vaux was short on answers - he scored all of his team high 15 points in the second and third quarters before an elbow to the eye removed him from the game in the fourth quarter - but he didn't get much help. Wings turnovers momentarily gave the Cougars an window of opportunity, where they made it a seven point game, 26-19, but couldn't capitalize. Wings piled on the points in the third quarter, as Jenkins and Marvillo Berroa (14 points) led the way. By the time the latter sunk a jumper in the third quarter, Wings had amassed a 21 point lead. That lead ballooned to as many as 34 before the two teams became testy late in the game, which led to an ejection. Vaux had run out of petrol and the clock's arrival at the 0:00 mark mercifully ended the game.
Jenkins earned the MVP with 19 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 assists. Jordan also grabbed 8 rebounds to go along with his 15 points and took home the Sportsmanship award.
Academy of the New Church downs L.I. Lutheran, 51-47
The Crusaders racked up their fourth loss of the season, as they were stumped by the Pennsylvania team. Trailing after the first three quarters, LuHi made a fourth quarter run and had tied the score twice in the game, but never held a lead at any point. Poor shooting from the field (18 for 59), behind the arc (5 for 27), and from the stripe (6 for 10) made things difficult, as ANC fared better in all three departments.
ANC Senior forward Marcus Gilbert's 16 point, 6 rebound, 4 block game earned him the MVP trophy. Teammate Dinyjyl Walker's 20 point, 6 rebound performance was the game high for scoring. LuHi big man Ryan DeNicola earned the Sportsmanship award with 13 points and 9 boards.