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03/03/06

Boys basketball capsules

James Johnson
Staff writer

(March 3, 2006) A capsule look at this weekend's Section V boys basketball championship games at Blue Cross Arena at the Community War Memorial:

Class AAA

Matchup with seeds: No. 2 Rush-Henrietta (17-3) vs. No. 1 Fairport (19-1). When: 9 p.m. Saturday.

Background: Fairport swept Rush-Henrietta in league play for the first time in years. A third win by the Red Raiders brings Fairport its first boys title since 1975. This is Fairport's fourth trip to the finals in five years. Rush-Henrietta stopped East's repeat bid with strong defensive play among its guards and a 25-point, 12-rebound game by forward/guard Calvin Betts.

Class AA

Matchup: No. 2 Greece Athena (15-5) vs. No. 1 Irondequoit (17-3).

When: 7:15 p.m. Saturday.

Background: Each team came up with road wins over the other during the regular season, including Athena in double overtime at Irondequoit. Athena guards Rickey Wallace, Levar Goff and Steve Kerr can be a three-headed monster for defenses. Irondequoit guards Cory Humphries and Rashaad Stokelin can go off offensively too, but the Eagles have had an unselfish approach all season.

Class A

Matchup: No. 6 Newark (16-7) vs. No. 4 Wilson (17-6). When: 5 p.m. Saturday.

Background: Buddy Brasky, whose Batavia team was Newark's semifinal victim, described the Reds best. Newark controls the pace and plays solid man-to-man defense. No team has scored more than 45 points against Newark in the tournament. Wilson could be Newark's biggest challenge because of solid senior guards Brandon Williams and Robert Parks. Wildcats forward Waryn McCullough, a solid producer all season, is due for a big game.

Class BB

Matchup: No. 6 School of the Arts (13-9) vs. No. 5 Penn Yan (11-10).

When: 3:15 p.m. Saturday.

Background: Penn Yan is another team that disregarded seeds and records. The Mustangs bumped off a No. 4 and a No. 1 to get a shot at their first title since 1998. Jared Wigden made four 3-pointers to help Penn Yan upset top-seeded Hornell. School of the Arts junior Robert Brown is coming off of a career-high 35-point game against defending Class B state champion Palmyra-Macedon. The Silverhawks can also turn to 6-6 junior Tomas Vasquez-Simmons inside.

Class B

Matchup: No. 5 Bishop Kearney (9-14) vs. No. 2 Wellsville (16-6). When: 1:30 p.m. Saturday.

Background: Just when you forget about Bishop Kearney as a title contender, the Kings show they are a threat. The Kings like to swarm opponents with their pressure defense. Junior guard Anthony Terry scored 31 points to get the Kings past No. 1 seed Sodus. Kearney defeated Wellsville 60- 34 on Feb. 7. Matt Baker has the hot hand for Wellsville after a 28-point game, including six 3-pointers, during his team's romp over Marcus Whitman.

Class CCC

Matchup: No. 2 Campbell-Savona (19-3) vs. No. 1 East Rochester (19-3).

When: 8:45 tonight.

Background: The East Rochester Bombers earned another shot at their first title since 1963. They also get another crack at the team that romped past them during last year's CC final. Campbell-Savona knocked off an athletic Charlotte team to come within one win of extending its streak of three titles in the last three years.

Class CC

Matchup: No. 2 Lyons (17-5) vs. No. 1 Perry (19-3). When: 7 tonight.

Background: These are two of the best small-school programs in Section V. This is Lyons' 21st appearance in a final, a Section V record. Isaiah Scott, a 6-1 guard, and 6-2 senior Dan Scherbyn are the tallest players in a small, but quick lineup. Perry, which won four titles in five years from 1998-2002, limited Gananda and South Seneca to 45 and 44 points, respectively.

Class C

Matchup: No. 3 Lyndonville (13-9) vs. No. 1 Freddie Thomas (15-7).

When: 5:45 tonight.

Background: This is not a bad place for a first-year varsity team like Freddie Thomas to be. The Titans have capitalized on speed and athleticism all season and hope to do the same against Lyndonville, which has never won a title.

Aaron Kent and Cody Castor have been two of Lyndonville's top players during the tournament.

Class DD

Matchup: No. 3 Romulus (18-4) vs. No. 1 Finney (19-3). When: 11:45 a.m. Saturday.

Background: Finney has its best chance to win its first title. Falcons guards Andy Marchand and Chris Verosky have scored 1,000 points in their varsity careers. Finney also tested itself against larger schools during the season. The Falcons will need to deal with 6-2 senior guard Rick McCulloch, who has produced 63 points and 23 rebounds in two tournament games.

Class D

Matchup: No. 4 Northstar (15-8) vs. No. 3 Geneva DeSales (16-6).

When: 10 a.m. Saturday.

Background: Northstar (1986) and Geneva DeSales (1989) hope to end long title droughts. Jaanai Beckford is the player to watch for Northstar, with Neil Cavalieri also capable of hurting opponents. Beckford produced statistical double-doubles in all three of Northstar's tournament games. Geneva DeSales has a capable scoring duo in Kurtis Porter and Joe Costello.

JAMESJ@DemocratandChronicle.com