By Sam Wilson
A slow start put the Ellicottville boys basketball team behind 11 points after one quarter, a deficit that would last the duration of a Saturday Centercourt Classic tilt.
The inaugural Classic held at Williamsville South and organized by basketball enthusiast Chad Andrews, who runs the popular View From Centercourt website and @centercourt42 Twitter handle, featured four games, starting with a Franklinville victory, 81-53, over Medina. In the next tipoff, also featuring a CCAA/Niagara-Orleans clash, Newfane jumped on Ellicottville for a 17-6 lead after the first quarter, and foul trouble plagued the Eagles in a 62-51 loss.
Kyle DeVoogel paced Newfane (12-4) with 24 points and Max Weber had 12. With 21 fouls, Ellicottville put Newfane at the free throw line for 28 points on 35 attempts.
Elliot Bowen led the Eagles with 18 points and 11 rebounds, while Griffin Chudy had 15 points and seven rebounds before fouling out.
“We dug ourselves an 11-point hole and we had 11 turnovers in the first quarter,” Ellicottville coach Dave McCann said. “We didn’t rebound very well, we didn’t shoot very well, we didn’t pass very well.
“We got (the lead) down to six three or four times in the third quarter, we just couldn’t get over the hump. They’d get an offensive rebound or we’d get a foul at the wrong time just being a little too aggressive.”
Still, McCann said the loss to a strong Class B-1 school could serve his team well with three games left before the Class D playoffs.
“I think it was a game that we had a chance to win going into and we just didn’t start very well,” he said. “We need to learn some things going into the playoffs and I think we learned some things. It’s a good loss in a sense.”
In other high school boys basketball action for the Eagles:
Ellicottville 78, Pine Valley 61
Austin Grinols registered 14 points, seven rebounds and eight assists as Ellicottville bounced back from just its second loss of the season with a Senior Night win Tuesday.
Elliot Bowen posted 24 points, seven rebounds and six blocks and Griffin Chudy added 22 points and six boards for the Eagles (16-2, 8-1).
“We got off to a good start offensively,” said Eagles coach Dave McCann, whose team held a 29-17 lead through just one quarter.
Stephan Crisanti had 18 points for Pine Valley (7-10).
With just two games left before the Section 6 Class D playoffs, the Eagles can clinch at least a share of the CCAA East II championship with a win Thursday at North Collins.
Ellicottville 81, Cattaraugus-LV 33
Three days after hitting the game-winning free throw to beat Franklinville, Griffin Chudy had an all-around game of 19 points, 11 rebounds, six steals and four assists to power Ellicottville Friday.
Austin Grinols had 20 points, four assists and four steals and Elliot Bowen notched 14 points and 13 rebounds for the Eagles. Austin Baker had 14 points for Cattaraugus-LV.