West Genesee forward Jack McLane (32) goes up for a hook shot in front of teammate Max Smith (10) during last Thursday’s game at Liverpool, where the Wildcats won, 80-58, McLane finishing with nine points.
Before winter weather brought a halt to things, the West Genesee boys basketball played five times in 10 days, taking its first defeats of the season, but offering a strong, emphatic response.
It had begun with the then-unbeaten Wildcats suffering back-to-back overtime defeats to Corcoran and Henninger, but it rebounded with a win over Baldwinsville in the Jan. 13 Zebra Classic.
What followed were two more SCAC Metro division tests on the road last week. WG got through one of them with its most impressive all-around performance of the season last Tuesday, going to Cicero-North Syracuse and slamming the Northstars 87-45.
No one expected this, especially C-NS, who entered the night sporting a six-game win streak and may have figured that the Wildcats were a bit tired from the league battles of the previous week.
If that was the calculation, it proved dead wrong.
WG, remembering how C-NS nearly beat them in a 50-49 battle in December in Camillus, was red-hot from the outset, leading 24-8 through one quarter and 43-17 by halftime, and it didn’t let up, eventually building a 62-23 lead before resting the starters in the fourth quarter.
By game’s end, all 12 Wildcats that saw action earned at least one field goal. Jack McLane led with 18 points, with Lucas Sutherland adding 11 points. Kam Jones got nine points, all from three 3-pointers, as Josiah Albright earned eight points and John Benson seven points.
Two nights later, it was another big road test, WG facing Liverpool, who had won seven of nine games following an 0-5 start that included a 74-48 defeat to the Wildcats.
Everyone figured the rematch would be closer, and it was – for much of the first quarter, anyway. Then, led by Sutherland and Will Amica, WG erupted, and the Warriors never recovered as the visitors prevailed 80-58.
Only holding a 14-13 lead late in that opening period, the Wildcats closed the quarter with an 11-1 push that Amica capped with a 3-pointer right before the horn. But that was just the appetizer.
Ten straight points to start the second quarter made it a 20-1 run, seven of them from Sutherland that included a 3-pointer and breakaway dunk. And it kept going, WG eventually going up 44-22 with more than five minutes left in the half.
That torrid pace was not maintained, and Liverpool would make some inroads before halftime with an 11-2 run of its own. But the Wildcats regained control for good with a 12-2 dash that bridged the third and fourth quarters.
By the time he exited, Sutherland had piled up 31 points, while Amica was close behind, getting 23 points. Ample support came from McLane (nine points), Jones (eight points) and Benson (seven points) as only one Liverpool player, Nick Klein, hit double figures, his 12 points all from four 3-pointers.
This busy stretch was supposed to culminate Saturday with a game against Victor (Section V) back at OCC, but the threat of a winter storm pushed it back to Feb. 2.
Instead, WG could rest up with its 11-2 overall record before visiting Fayetteville-Manlius this Friday night as part of a girls/boys varsity doubleheader that starts at 5 p.m.
Feb 17, 2019
Feb 17, 2019
Feb 17, 2019