Cicero A week – and a turn of the calendar to 2013 – removed from its overtime defeat to rival Liverpool in its own Holiday Classic title game, the Cicero-North Syracuse boys basketball team was eager to get started again.
Just how eager was something Rome Free Academy found out last Friday night as the Northstars, in its most lopsided effort of the season, crushed the Black Knights 74-38 for its fourth victory in five games.
Both sides struggled to put up baskets in the first half. But RFA struggled a lot more, as C-NS’s pressure eventually took a toll, so despite its own sluggish efforts, the Northstars carried a 25-13 lead to the break.
Whatever problems C-NS had were solved in the third quarter. Tearing through the Black Knights’ defenses, the Northstars more than doubled its output, outscoring them 29-13 in that frame in a decisive move.
Xavier Brown, with 18 points, led the way, while Mike Tricarico and Nathan Tyrrell each finished with 12 points. Brian DeMonte managed nine points as Vince Mallaro and Austin Perry earned six points apiece. In all, 10 different C-NS players earned at least one field goal.
C-NS would visit Baldwinsville on Tuesday and return home Friday to face Central Square. Meanwhile, 5-1 Liverpool ends its 11-day hiatus Tuesday at Nottingham and is home Friday for a rematch with West Genesee, whom it beat in the first round of the C-NS tournament on Dec. 27.