BAYSIDE, NY - A day after a hard fought win over Brooklyn rivals Thomas Jefferson, South Shore came to Queens to play in the Steve Simms PSAL Mid-Winter Classic to play Wings Academy, considered to be the best in the Bronx, and once of NYC's best.
It was another tough test for the Vikings, and a day after knocking off the Orange Wave in overtime, they did it again, taking down Wings, this time in double overtime, 72-70 in thrilling fashion.
South Shore made an early statement with a 9-0 run midway through the 1st quarter. They started slow, but got it going behind a vicious throwdown by Shamiek Sheppard who seemed to come out more aggressive and determined. Wings struggled from the perimeter in the 1st, but got good play from sophomore PG Desure Buie who was able to get into the lane, and contain the Wings deficit to 13-10 after 1.
Senior SG Marvilio Berroa hit a three from the left wing to tie the game up at 13 early in the 2nd, but that was followed by an 11-0 South Shore run, paced by Terrence Samuel who knocked down a 3 from the corner to punctuate the run. It was 24-13 Vikings when Wings would respond with a big run of their own. The start getting more active on defense which created turnovers, and with Berroa getting hot from the perimeter, and the play of Jaequan Brown, Wings cut it down to a 25-23 South Shore lead in the closing seconds of the half. Wings looked to have all momentum, but Samuel knocked down a straight away three at the buzzer to see the Vikings go into the break up 28-23.
The Samuel three could've squashed all momentum for Wings, but it didn't as they came out hot to start the 3rd and grabbed all control with Buie going off for 11 in the quarter and Joseph Mbisike doing a good job not letting South Shore crash the glass and dominate the boards. Wings had turned a 5 points halftime deficit into an 11 point lead late in the 3rd. Doudmy St. Hilaire scored on a layup down the left side at the 3rd quarter buzzer to make it 49-40 Wings after 3, but the damage looked to be done.
A technical foul was called on Mbisike early in the 4th for taunting and that seemed to spark a South Shore run. Back to back threes from Samuel and Devyn Wilson made it a 49-48 lead for Wings with 7 minutes to go. Buie hit on a pull up jumper from 10 feet out to push the lead back to 3 for Wings, but Sheppard and Samuel carried the Vikings on both ends of the floor to help them tie the game up at 53 with just over 2 minutes to go.
Buie came back and knocked down a straight away three, but South Shore would score the next 5 points to reassume the lead. Buie would be fouled with 54 seconds to go in the 4th and he would knock down a pair to tie it up at 58, and after both teams missed key opportunities to take the lead late, the game would go into OT tied at 58.
Berroa and Samuel traded wing threes to open the overtime, and neither team would score after that until 1:40 left with Buie, who as a sophomore was playing with wisdom beyond his years, hit on 2 free throws after being fouled driving down the left wing. Wings would have a 65-63 lead with under 20 seconds to go when Wilson would miss a three from the left corner, and Mbisike was fouled looking to seal the win for Wings with 11 seconds to go. He would miss both FT's though and Sheppard would score on an inbounds pass from Samuel as the end of overtime buzzer sounded to send the game into a 2nd OT tied at 65.
The Vikings took control by scoring the first 4 points of the 2nd overtime, but Berroa hit a big three with 2 minutes to go to put Wings right back into it. After South Shore went 1 of 2 from the FT line, Brown would tie it once again with 30 seconds left on a putback off a Buie miss. South Shore held for one, and after Wilson missed a three, it looked set for a 3rd OT, but Sheppard crash the glass and tipped the ball back in at the buzzer to hand South Shore a tough 72-70 win.
Sheppard would lead South Shore with 23 points in the win, with Samuel and Hilaire adding 19 and 16 respectively. Buie led all scorers with 30 points in the loss for Wings, with Berroa chipping in with 18.
Sheppard crashed the glass and got the game winning tip, something he had been doing all game and said after the game he was not going to quit doing late.
"I figured there was a bit of time left after the shot so I figured why not crash the glass, and when you crash the glass, good things happen." Sheppard said.
Good things did happen with the game winner, and South Shore coach Mike Beckles, expected nothing less than a big time performance from his Vikings squad.
"The guys have really picked up their work ethic since the beginning of the season so I felt they are prepared for situations like today."
On the other end it was what could have been for Wings. Coach Billy Turnage blamed poor defensive execution late and missed FT's as part of the keys of the game for his side.
"The free throws late and the poor defense, and I think we played not to lose instead of going to win it." Turnage said. "3 or 4 times we had the lead and I think we started watching the clock a bit instead of doing the things that got us to that point to begin with." Buie, who had a breakout performance, agreed with his coaches sentiments.
"Yeah, we had the game won a number of times. We should've worked harder and been more physical and hit more FT's. We should've won." Buie said.
A great game that came down to the wire, and for South Shore, Beckles hopes it raises the thought of how people think of his squad.
"Jefferson and Wings, 2 of the top teams in the city, getting those wins the way we did. It shows a lot about the heart and character of our guys. I hope people see that."
Curtis Over Cardozo, 68-53
In another Steve Simms PSAL Mid-Winter Classic, the host team Cardozo took on Staten Island's best, Curtis. Early on it looked to be a hard fought contest, but too much Hassan Martin did in the Judges, as the Rhode Island bound big man finished with a game high 24 points to help pace the Warriors to the comfortable win.
Tyler Summers also looked sharp with 4 threes and adding 18 points for Curtis, which led by as many as 21 in the game. The Warriors used a fierce interior defense led by Martin and Jermaine Huff to stifle any driving lanes for Cardozo.
The Judges, who struggled all night from behind the arc, hitting on only 4 threes in the game, didn't have an answer inside for Martin, with Danny Janel, the lone Cardozo post player, saddled with foul trouble for most of the game.
Curtis, which is in the midst of a 7 games in 10 day stretch, looked sharp from start to finish, and coach Rich Buckheit hopes to see more of this kind of effort from his team in the coming days.
"We lost to St. Anthony's (NJ) yesterday where didn't look good at all, but today we played well, and next Friday we have Bishop Loughlin, but tomorrow we have Farrell, and it's a Staten Island league game. Against St. Joe's by the Sea in our last league game we came out real flat and sluggish, and hopefully we don't take those games for granted." Buckheit said.
Cardozo in the loss was led by the 12 points of Kyle Credle.
Transit Tech Edges Manhattan Center 66-64
Manhattan Center fought back from a 15 point deficit to get the game even late in the 4th, but key FT's by Matthew Banton, and a big rebound by Fabian MacDonald in the closing seconds helped secure the win for the Express.
Nykolas King did all he could to bring the Rams back into the game scoring 10 of his game high 25 points in the final quarter, but it was not enough.
Banton and MacDonald each finished with 17 to help Transit Tech pull out the win.
In PSAL alternative league action:
Satellite Academy defeated Thelma Hamilton, 75-64
Larry Beckett led with 27 points & 11 rebounds. Abdel Pegegeuro added 18 points. Kevin Gonzalez was high man for Thelma Hamilton with 17 points.