'Canes roll to tourney title
New Castle (73) Vs. West Middlesex (36)
New Castle High’s boys basketball team started hot Saturday and kept going.
The Red Hurricane raced to a 21-8 lead after the first and rolled to a 73-36 win over West Middlesex to claim its own tipoff tournament title.
“I thought we played well. I thought our defense was really good. We went into Friday’s Perry game blind, so this was our first opportunity to put in a scouting report and game plan and see how these guys implemented it,” New Castle coach Ralph Blundo said. “I thought we did things well.”
New Castle (2-0), which won is 33rd-straight game and 89th of its last 91, took control against the Big Reds (1-1), who were ranked third in the PIAA Class AA poll. The ’Canes pushed their advantage to 35-20 at halftime. They outscored West Middlesex, 18-6, in the third and cruised to the win — their 37th straight at home and their 71st regular season triumph in a row. New Castle converted 63 percent (31 of 49) of its shots.
“We shot it really, really well. When you shoot the ball that well, you will look good,” Blundo said. “But, I thought we executed well. We were on loose balls and active on the boards. I thought our guys came out and really competed.”
Marquel Hooker scored a game-high 21 points to earn tournament MVP honors. He added six steals, five rebounds and four assists. Robert Natale had 19 tallies and five treys. He contributed four rebounds, three assists and three steals and was named to the all-tournament team. Pat Minenok had six points, three rebounds and a steal and earned all-tournament team honors. Micah Fulena had seven points, eight assists and two steals, while D’Marqus Blanchard and Marcus Hooker both had six points.
Trey Staunch led West Middlesex with 10 points.