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High school boys basketball: Lyme, Sandy Creek take boys crowns


Troy Wilson has accomplished plenty in his five standout seasons on the Lyme boys varsity basketball team.

He’s been the league MVP two years running, led the division in scoring the last two seasons and gone over the 1,500-point mark for his career.

But the senior all-star will tell you that winning the last two Frontier League “D” Division playoff championships were about as special as it gets. This season was especially sweet as Lyme lost to Sackets Harbor twice during the regular season before the second-seeded Indians finally beat the top-seeded Patriots 63-56 Saturday at Jefferson Community College to claim a second consecutive playoff crown.

In the earlier “C” Division final, top-seeded Sandy Creek defeated No. 2 South Lewis 60-48.


“It’s a great way to finish off my Frontier League career, for sure,” said Wilson, who scored a game-high 33 points to spark the Indians (11-6) to a come-from-behind win. “Last year, were were favored so we thought we were the better team. This year, they beat us twice and we weren’t really sure if we had enough to beat them. But the guys really came together and played a great game.”

That performance came after receiving a scolding from coach Leo Wilson after Tuesday’s lackluster semifinal win over Copenhagen for playing soft and not giving a 100 percent effort.

“We talked the past two days about leaving it all on the floor and coming out with more energy,” said coach Wilson. “And I thought we did today.”

Senior Timmy Morrow, who scored just two points Tuesday while in foul trouble, added 16 big points for Lyme. Senior Forrest Stafford added nine key points and did yeoman work on the boards for the Indians.

Troy Wilson went 6-for-6 at the foul line (10-for-10 overall) in the final minute as the Patriots fell short for the second straight season.

“He’s just a tremendous player,” Sackets Harbor coach Jeff Robbins said of Wilson. “I thought we made him work really hard for his points. But he has a way of scoring no matter how you defend him.”

Troy Wilson thought it was Lyme’s work on the defensive end that made the difference.

“At the end, we made them force some shots in key situations,” Troy Wilson said. “I tried to be really aggressive going to the basket and drawing fouls. And Timmy and Forrest really had some big hoops.”

Lyme seized a 30-26 halftime lead, but Sackets Harbor (15-3) went 4-for-4 on 3-pointers the first 2 1/2 minutes of the third quarter, including two each from Josh Keruski (18 points) and Eric Chrostowski (13 points).

Sackets Harbor led 40-33 after a Keruski 15-footer. But Morrow answered with an inside bucket and Wilson hit all three free throws after being fouled as Lyme crawled back to within a point (43-42) heading into the final quarter.

The Patriots were hampered by having second-leading scorer Colton Belcher on the bench with foul trouble for much of the second half. He scored 10 first-half points, but went scoreless the second half.

“Obviously, that took away our inside game,” Robbins said. “But it hurt more on defense because their big kids got some easier looks near the basket.”

With Lyme down 45-42, Morrow scored on the inside, Mark Parker hit his only basket, a 3-pointer, and Stafford scored on a follow shot to boost Lyme into a 49-45 lead, a lead it never relinquished as Wilson clinched the game at the foul line.


Tyler Swarthout’s memory of his last game against South Lewis was not good.

“I was awful,” said the Sandy Creek senior, who went scoreless for the only time this season during a 50-47 loss. “It didn’t take much to motivate me for this game.”

Swarthout started out fast Saturday, hitting a 3-pointer, scoring 14 first-half points and finishing with 23 as the Comets (16-2) added the playoff crown to their regular-season championship.

“We were determined to be aggressive going to the basket and to the boards,” Swarthout said. “And then we dug in defensively and took them out of what they wanted to do.”

Matt Reese was an inside force, scoring 16 points and grabbing 14 rebounds, and Zach Halsey contributed 12 points and 11 points for Sandy Creek, which led 28-20 at halftime and maintained a healthy lead the entire second half.

Coach Jim Hunt said a team defensive effort on “C” Division MVP Jason Martin, keyed by Cameron Hall, was responsible for the win.

“Everything they do runs through Martin,” Hunt said. “It was out goal to take the ball out of his hands and make someone else beat us.”

Martin finished with 20 points. But he managed just four field goals while hitting 10 foul shots.

“We let them dictate a faster tempo,” said South Lewis coach Kirk Gerhardt. “And they hurt us inside with all of those offensive rebounds and easy shots. We just had too many defensive breakdowns.”

Freshman Josh Newman also scored 11 points for South Lewis (14-4).

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