Nottingham showed up on Thursday night, and this one went right to the wire before a 3-point shot at the wire by Henry Sullivan allowed the Bulldogs to edge the Northstars 68-65.
However, the big story came in the second quarter. Already with 16 points on the night, Evans drove hard to the basket and fell to the floor hard, sustaining a concussion. He left the game, and his return remains unknown.
Without him, C-NS, who led 23-13 after one period, saw its lead cut to 30-29 by halftime. From there, it stayed close the rest of the way, the Northstars leading large portions of the game, but unable to put away the Bulldogs, leading to a wild final sequence that culminated with Sullivan’s decisive long-range jumper.
DeMonte, hitting a trio of 3-pointers, led C-NS with 18 points. Troy McIntyre stepped up for nine points as Williams managed seven points and David Verret got six points. For Nottingham, Sullivan and Marcus McDonald each had 15 points, with Trenell Reid adding 13 points.
Less than 24 hours later, C-NS made the trip to Henninger High School to play against Utica Proctor (whom it lost to, 43-41, in last February’s Section III Class AA quarterfinal) in the opening game of the annual Peppino’s Invitational.
Showing grit and determination, the short-handed Northstars beat the Raiders 53-48, leading the entire game, but not feeling safe until McIntyre saved matters in the waning seconds.
No matter what it did, C-NS could not get away from Proctor, who trailed by as much as 10 in the first half before closing the gap to 26-20 at the break.
Then C-NS held the Raiders without a point for the first five minutes of the third quarter and doubled its margin to 32-20, but again Proctor answered, going on a 10-1 run late in that period, and setting up a tense homestretch.