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North Tonawanda powers past Niagara-Wheatfield for season sweep

Sat, Jan 28th 2017 10:35 am

Nine 3-pointers help Lumberjacks go 8-2 in league play

By David Yarger

In front of a packed crowd at North Tonawanda High School on Friday, the Lumberjacks defeated the Niagara-Wheatfield Falcons, 76-37. The win gives the Lumberjacks a season-sweep of the Falcons, as the Jacks won the first outing by a score of 72-34.

It was not the Falcons night shooting the ball, as the team made only 13 field goals and seven free throws.

For the Jacks, it was the complete opposite. They made nine 3-pointers and 11 players scored.

North Tonawanda coach Ryan Mountain said, the game could've been different if some shots would've fallen for the Falcons.

"I think tonight Wheatfield just had so many shots that went in-and-out on them; that really would've changed the complexion of the game," he said.

The Jacks got off to a fast start, extending the lead to 12-0, before the Falcons made their first shot. The Falcons only made one more shot the rest of the quarter, and the score at the end of the first quarter was 20-5.

Nothing changed in the second quarter for the Falcons, as they only made two field goals and a couple of free throws. Meanwhile, North Tonawanda poured it on, and the score was 35-13 at halftime.

In the first half, North Tonawanda showed why they're at the top of the Niagara Frontier League, causing more than 10 turnovers and swarming any Falcon who tried to score in the paint.

In the second half, the Jacks stuck to the game plan and continued to score. Sean Ferry came off the bench and knocked down four 3-pointers, giving him 12 points on the game.

The Falcons scored more than they had in the entire first half in the third quarter, with 14 points, but the Jacks countered that with 25, to extend the lead to 60-27.

In the fourth quarter, reserve players for each team came into the game. After a few more players for North Tonawanda scored, the final score was 76-37.

Mountain called the game a fun one for his players.

"It's a fun game when the ball's going through the hoop and everyone's scoring," he said. "Then the two guys that didn't get in the scorebook, they still did so many things that helped us win, too."

Along with Ferry, Trevor Book, who had 13 points, led the Jacks. Rory Farkas and Brandon Casterline both chipped in with 11.

For the Falcons, the loss comes after the team's 75-49 upset win over the 10-3 Depew High School.

Coach Erik O'Bryan called it an "embarrassing" night.

"It was an embarrassing game," he said. "I'm not dismissing the fact that they're a good basketball team, I'm just not certain they're almost 40 points better than us. Just embarrassing."

For the Falcons, Anthony Ruffino led the team with 14 points, while Jalen Bradberry had 11, and Jaeger Martino and Ben Devantier both added 6.

It doesn't get much easier for the Falcons. They travel to Niagara Falls, another team at the top of the NFL, at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 31

At 8-2 in league play, the Lumberjacks sit in first place of the Niagara Frontier League. Their next contest will be a test at Lockport High School, which beat them, 64-51, the first time around.

Mountain noted the challenge at hand, and said he hoped for similar results to what he got from his team vs. N-W.

"We're going to see a completely different team on Tuesday; extremely fast, quick, tough to guard," he said. "Hopefully, if I could think of one thing out of tonight's game, shooting the basketball inside and out, because we did not shoot well the first time we played Lockport."

Mountain said he hopes his team takes the confidence it had shooting the ball against Wheatfield into Lockport.

At the top of the league, Mountain talked about taking it a game at a time to finish the season.

"Lockport is, unquestionably, the team to beat, if you look at the remainder of our schedule," he said. "So, it really just begins and ends with taking care of business at Lockport."

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