GLENS FALLS – Just three points separated Scotia-Glenville and East High at the start of the fourth quarter of the Class A boys basketball public school final.
It was an appropriate number, because Scotia-Glenville made a few 3-pointers to walk away with the state championship.
While East High stalled, Scotia-Glenville of Section II surged to a 66-44 win at the Glens Falls Civic Center, as the Orientals were shut out in the fourth quarter until the final seconds.
East High falls short
Alex Sausville played “Mr. Outside” for Scotia-Glenville (26-0), scoring 26 points, including 8 of 13 3-point shooting. His 3-point total is the state tournament record, and led a 12 of 25 performance by the Tartans. Sausville also hustled to grab eight rebounds.
“I knew he was in rhythm right away,” said Scotia-Glenville senior Dom LeMorta. “We kept feeding him the ball. I mean, you know, when someone is hot like that, it doesn’t matter who it is. You gotta get him the ball.
“And you know, Alex was on fire tonight, he didn’t miss (much). It’s great to see him do that for us. He led us to a state championship.”
Joe Cremo was “Mr. Inside,” finishing with 23 points for Scotia-Glenville. A number of his field goals came after Scotia-Glenville shifted the East defense so that the tournament’s Most Valuable Player was wide open under the basket.
“We didn’t pay attention to some of the guys who were good shooters,” East coach Darrell Barley said. “We tried to switch up zones, but they were very well-prepared.
“That was probably the best team we played that was prepared for whatever we threw at them.”
That said, East’s collapse on offense may have been an equal stunner.
Scotia-Glenville outscored East High 21-2 during the fourth quarter, which ended the Orientals’ drive for the first boys basketball New York State Public High School Athletic Association championship in the school’s history.
“Once we got down by eight (in the fourth quarter) and the way they were moving the ball, we started to panic,” Barley said. “We just didn’t keep pace.
“The best team won.”
Dontay Caruthers, East’s leading scorer with 14 points, was shutout in the second half. East freshman Zion Morrison finished with nine points, all on 3-point shots.
An old-fashioned three-point play by Cremo – a field goal as he was fouled and a free throw – was the beginning of the end for East. Caruthers picked up his third personal foul on East’s next possession. Sausville then found his range again behind the 3-point line to move Scotia-Glenville to a 51-42 lead.
Caruthers was charged with another player-control foul on the next East trip upcourt. Barley called timeout for East, but when play resumed Sausville made another 3-pointer.
“They went on a 3-point surge,” Caruthers said. “That’s what you get when you don’t play defense.
“We accomplished more than other schools, or even in East High history. We just couldn’t close the door to our story, we fell a page short.”