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Mustangs best Panthers to share N-O lead

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 9 February 2018 at 9:01 pm

Photos by Cheryl Wertman – Medina’s Jalin Cooper shoots over Newfane defender Brandon Gross during the Mustangs key win over the visiting Panthers this evening.

A big third quarter scoring surge keyed defending champion Medina to a key 66-57 victory over visiting Newfane this evening to move into a share of the Niagara-Orleans League boys basketball lead.

The victory pulls Medina even with Newfane at 8-2 for the N-O lead with just two games remaining on the league schedule.

Jalin Cooper scored 22 and Mason Lewis and Izaiah Rhim both added 12 to lead the way for Medina as Alex Allis chipped in with 9, Brendan Luthart 5, Tyler Chinn 3, Nate Sherman 2 and Brian Fry 1.

Newfane’s Max Weber drives to the basket against Medina defenders Jorge Phillips (22) and Trenton Jones (24).

Max Weber poured in a game high 28 for Newfane as Kyle DeVoogel and Umaru Ibrahim both added 10, Jonah Wisniewski 4, Matt DiTullio 3 and Brandon Gross 2. Weber’s efforts included four threes and 14 of 18 from the free throw line.

Up by only four, 29-25, at the half, Medina quickly doubled its lead to 33-25 at the outset of the third period on layups by Rhim and Cooper.

The Mustangs then completed the big 18-8 period surge by closing the stanza with s 10-0 run to extend the advantage to 14, 47-33, at the three-quarter mark. Rhim had a layup and a rebound bucket, Cooper a jumper, Sherman a rebound basket and Lewis two free throws during that key run.

Newfane though came battling back cutting the deficit in half to seven at 56-49 with just under three minutes to go as as DeVoogel spearheaded that rally with two threes and six free throws.

However, the Mustangs weathered the storm answering back with a key 7-2 run, all from the foul line, to regain a 12 point, 63-51 lead with less than a minute to go and put a lock on the must win victory. Rhim, Chinn, Allis and Lewis all had free throws during that stretch. Lewis in fact went 9 of 10 on the line for the evening.

The contest was deadlocked 13-13 at the end of the first period as Newfane closed with sn 8-2 run to pull even.  Cooper had 8 for the Mustangs and Weber 8 for the Panthers during that stretch.

Medina regained the lead for good  by a slender 29-5 margin at the half as a dunk and a three by Cooper along with a pair of threes by Allis sparked the Mustangs in the second quarter.

The win gives Medina a season sweep over Newfane as the Mustangs also used a big third period surge to key a 73-65 victory on the Panthers court in the earlier meeting.

Medina will now close out the N-O season with home games against Barker and Akron next week while Newfane winds up with road contests at Akron and rival Wilson.

Medina’s Mason Lewis drives by Newfane’s Jonah Wisniewski.