March 4, 2010

Hollow Hills West (N.Y) remains unbeaten

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Folks in Long Island say truly big basketball games only come around every once in a while.

How infrequently? Local Newsday columnist Gregg Sarra was making Wally Szczerbiak references.

So it should come as no surprise that more than 1,000 people were turned away when No. 34 Dix Hills (N.Y.) Hollow Hills West met Middle Island (N.Y.) Longwood for the Suffolk County Class AA title.

And no surprise that many of them stood outside in a slight rain to get scoring updates.

The 4,000 standing-room only fans inside saw a good one.

Tennessee commit Tobias Harris scored 10 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter to lead Hollow Hills West to a 77-69 victory.

Harris, the No. 5 player in the Rivals Class of 2010, was in foul trouble all night and played the entire fourth quarter with four. That didn't stop him from adding 13 rebounds, six blocks and three steals to his night.

And it certainly didn't stop the trash-talking, which Newsday said caused the teams to be separated early - and kept going all night.

"You have to give credit to Longwood. They stayed with us the whole game," Harris told the paper. "I knew I had to put some balls in the hoop."

Tavon Sledge did his part, too - adding 22 points.

"This was the best game we played all year because it was Longwood," he told the paper. "All I said was keep playing. We've been here before. Tobias has gotten in foul trouble before so everybody knew they had to step up. Longwood is a shooting team and they really kept the pressure on us."

Hollow Hills West, which improved to 22-0, trailed by as much as four in the fourth quarter; it took the lead for good at 66-65 on a 3-pointer by Tobias.

It was an ending Tobias predicted, Hollow Hills West coach Bill Mitaritonna told Newsday.

"At the end of the third quarter, Tobias said to me, 'Don't worry. I got this,' " Mitaritonna said. "Tobias is the man."

For those who got to see him.

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