BROOKLYN, NY - The Rose Classic, the elite girl's tournament here locally in New York City, is coming down the stretch, as the 2nd Round was played on Sunday at JHS 113. Most all of the biggest names in and around Girls H.S. Basketball were in action, hoping to claim the coveted Rose Classic title. Here is a recap from the 2nd Round on Sunday.
D1 Bound overshadows Riverside Hawks 16u Blue 61-49
Coached by Mike Toro, D1 Bound is truly a team loaded with players committed to Division 1 schools, but for a while it looked like the Riverside Hawks Blue, which is there 16u team, was going to pull the upset. D1 struggled early on and was settling for jump shots, while allowed Riverside, led by Kyla Formey (Midwood '15) to get out in transition, where she and the team showed no fear. Michigan commit Lauren Brozoski (Long Island Lutheran '15) was one of the lone D1 players who was able to find the bottom of the net in the early going. She hit a pair of threes in the 2nd quarter, and D1 had a 24-21 lead at the half.
Riverside scored the first 6 points of the 2nd half to take a 27-24 lead with 5:50 to go in the 3rd, but off a timeout, D1 finally got it going. They applied a full court press, and Brozoski and Duke bound Sierra Calhoun (Christ the King '14) were able to create turnovers, and finish easily in transition. Another big presence for D1 was Virginia commit Lauren Moses (Rancocus Valley, NJ '14) who at 6'1" was able to do damage against the tiring Riverside front line.
D1 ended up going on a 16-0 run to end the 3rd to essentially put the game away. Moses had 17 points to lead the way, while Brozoski added 10 in the win. Formey had 13 for Riverside in the loss.
Exodus Elite smash Lady Choz 16u Black, 54-33
This was a matchup that packed the house at JHS 113 with South Carolina bound Bianca Cuevas (Nazareth '14) taking the floor against the Gauchos current Nike EYBL team, led by Ashanae McLaughlin (Murry Bergtraum '15). Early on it looked like it would be a game down to the wire, but a big run in the 3rd quarter helped make it a laugher with the Exodus graduating seniors easing for the 21 point win.
It was a low scoring start, but eventually in the 2nd quarter Cuevas and McLaughlin started going at it. On back to back trips up the floor they each hit a threes guarding each other, and it seemed like the matchup was on. Alexandra Smith (Murry Bergtraum '15) finished on a couple buckets in the inside, and though in paper it seemed like Exodus would run away with this one, it was just a 19-18 lead for them at the break.
As much hope as the Choz had to start the 2nd half, it went away that quickly. Quinnipiac commit Jen Fay (Nazareth '14) started it with a three, and that was the start of 4 straight threes by Exodus, with Cuevas hitting a pair as well. Yazmine Belk (Nazareth '14) also was strong in the 2nd half, dominating the paint along with future Wagner star Sofia Roma (Nazareth '14), as the team comprised of mainly Lady Kingsmen, went on a 21-1 run to take complete control.
Siena commit Joella Gibson (Murry Bergtraum '14) was a lone bright spot for the Choz in the 2nd half as they succumbed to the relentless pressure of Exodus' guards, as it was Exodus cruising in the 4th quarter for the easy win.
Cuevas paced Exodus with 21 points in the win, with Belk adding in 10 as well. In defeat it was McLaughlin who had 14 points, though 10 of them came in the opening half.
NYC Heat topple Exodus 15u, 43-30
The young Exodus crew got off to a strong start against the Heat, with Niya Johnson (Nazareth '16) putting on a show in the early going scoring 7 of her team's first 11 points en route to them taking an 11-2 lead. A low scoring 1st half could've seen NYC Heat not get out if single digits if not for a final seconds three by McKayla Hernandez (St. Mary's '15), as Exodus was up 17-12 at the break.
The Heat made a conscious effort it seemed to find Jordan Agustus (St. Mary's '15) to start the 2nd half, and the versatile wing scored in a variety of ways, showing off a nice mid-range jumper, along with an array of spin moves going to the rim, and with 3:04 to go in the 3rd, NYC Heat took their first lead at 25-23 and they never looked back.
Mimi Reid (Murry Bergtraum '17) tried to keep Exodus in the game, but Harvard bound guard Nani Redford (Long Island Lutheran '14) hit a pair of well-timed threes, and Agustus scored 12 second half points as the Hear rallied from an early hole to win going away, 43-30.
Agustus led all scorers in this one with 12 of her game high 17 points coming in the all-important 2nd half, while Redford chipped in with 10 as well for the winners. Johnson, who started so strong for Exodus, was limited for much of the rest of the game, but still led the way for her team with 9.
Exodus NYC squeak by Westchester Hoopers, 43-40
This proved to be the tightest and most compelling game of the day, as Exodus' Nike EYBL team took on a scrappy Westchester Hoopers team that felt confident going in, and had chances to win right until the final whistle.
Martine Fortune (Shipley, PA '15), who is already committed to Georgia Tech, was taking over early on, using her 6'4" size to dominate and finish near everything around the rim. Sydney Zambrotta (Christ the King '16) was also on in the early going knocking down a pair of long jumpers, and Exodus jumped out to an early 19-10 lead, but the Hoopers weren't about to go away. Ashley Martin (Marymount School '15) was a tough hardnosed finisher, going at defenders and finishing driving in as she had 7 points in the last 4 minutes of the half to see the Hoopers turn around the 9 point deficit and grab a 23-22 lead at the half.
Kaela Hilaire (Floral Park '15) led the charge for Exodus to reclaim the lead early in the 3rd knocking down a three from the left wing, and that was followed by Providence commit Erica Meyer (Wilton, CT '15) finishing down low against contact on a putback attempt to see Exodus once again grab a seemingly comfortable 34-27 lead after three.
It was actually 41-31 for Exodus early in the 4th, but the Hoopers then made a run that caught near everyone by surprise and got them right back in the game. Asjha White-Silas (New Rochelle '15) scored on a couple buckets in the paint, and then after a long three from Korina Guerra (Ursuline '16), it was just 41-40 Exodus after Westchester had run off 9 straight points. The Hoopers had 2 chances to actually take the lead after Exodus, issued front ends of back to back 1 and 1's, but they couldn't convert. Zambrotta did eventually sink a pair of FT's with under 10 seconds to go to make it 43-40, and though they seemed to have a good play designed, the Hoopers never were able to get off a shot to tie, throwing the ball away with 2 seconds left trying to make the extra pass, and Exodus survived a tough one to advance, 43-40.
Fortune had 14 points to lead Exodus in the game, with Meyer adding 8 as well for the winning side. Martin led for the Hoopers with 16, with Silas-White also putting in 10 in defeat.
Other 2nd Round scores from Sunday at the Rose Classic:
New Heights 15u Blue 45- Triple Threat Elite 36
Riverside Hawks 14u Black 37- Defenders AAU Stone 32
New Jersey Sparks 16u 73- Riverside Hawks Seniors 65