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Boys Basketball Wins First County Title

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The Boys Varsity Basketball team won their first-ever County Championship on Saturday, defeating Kennedy 55-51 in overtime. This is Hills’ first-ever county title, and one that will never be forgotten.

The game was a revenge story, as in the regular season, Kennedy defeated Hills in overtime. Kennedy was also the defending champions heading into this game, so the Patriots knocked off the defending champions. All the seniors will enjoy this great end of their Wayne Hills basketball career.

The game’s regulation minutes had a lot of back and forth., and at the end of 4 periods, the score was tied up at 49. Joey Belli had nine points, Joe Cerone had a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds, and Justin Wills knocked down four three-pointers and had 20 total points.  After the game, he had this to say about the win:

“The big thing was just to believe,” said Wills. “It’s been like that for every game we’ve played Kennedy.”  Joe Cerone scored all six points in overtime for the Patriots, including the game-clinching layup with 10 seconds left.

“It was such a surreal moment. I was in the moment, everything around me went silent, and all I could focus on was putting the ball in,” said Cerone after his game winning layup.

Hills trailed by eight with less than two minutes remaining. Then, Justin Wills knocked down two HUGE threes, one from the right corner, and an off-balance shot from the right wing, making it a two-point game. Joey Belli was then fouled and made two free throws, tying the score at 49 apiece.  The game went into overtime, where the Patriots outscored Kennedy, 6-2. Joe Cerone had all 6 overtime points for the Patriots, showing his outstanding play come clutch time. The final basket that Cerone scored, the game-clinching layup, came on a full court pass from junior guard Jake Belli. The Patriots were passing the ball around in the backcourt, trying to get fouled and burn time, Belli threw a laser pass right to Cerone, who was in the deep in the paint, and Cerone turned around and laid it in. The gym at Valley went crazy, as the Patriots walked away as county champions.

The Patriots will move on to States, where they will look to continue their dominant season.

 

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Boys Basketball Wins First County Title