The RunDown

The RunDown

Hawks Make a Run at County Tournament

Aidan Trujillo
Players Liam Hickey, Phil Doornheim, David Nunez, and Sean Golden seen celebrating their Elite 8 victory.

The Boys Varsity Basketball team played in the BIT, (the county tournament), over the last few weeks, and here is how they did.

The Hawks started the season poorly, dropping three of their first four games. They would roar back though, at one point winning nine of ten, including a six-game winning streak.

Part of that winning streak was during the BIT games. River Dell came in hot, knowing they could make a run. They hosted the round one game against Bergen Tech. BT was led by Dean Aminyar, their leading scorer, who would single-handedly keep them in it, but in the end River Dell’s size and depth would give them a round one win 39-36.

River Dell easily outmatched Dwight Englewood, coasting to a 58-51 victory, moving on to the elite eight.

In the elite eight they would face 16-4 Rutherford, their greatest challenge yet. Rutherford was led by a 6’9 player, the first time the Hawks were outsized. Behind a near triple double from Senior Sean Golden, River Dell would hang onto a 64-53 win. Holding Rutherford’s big man to under 15 points. Golden would go on to say, “The big guy was tall but slow,” and that he “couldn’t guard me.”

The final four came around and River Dell was given a much-wanted rematch with Dwight Morrow. Early in the season the Hawks played DM and lost badly. They were a different team now, and after their win streak they felt as though they were ready for the rematch. River Dell didn’t have the start they wanted but kept it close, with only a one-point deficit. The third quarter was a different story. River Dell’s man defense collapsed, and they couldn’t finish at the rim. Golden would pick up his third foul in the third quarter, and in just a minute and thirty seconds on the bench, DM scored eight unanswered points. River Dell was forced into a 2-3 zone, but as they were losing, the slow pace caused by the zone would be a detriment to their comeback. Despite a tough effort from David Nunez and Golden, each scoring in the double digits in the final quarter River Dell would fall to Dwight Morrow for a second time 66-69.

After the game Golden stated, “I think the competition was fair throughout the tournament, we had a good chance to beat every team we played, and they had a solid chance to beat us.” The Hawks will play two more regular season games against Cresskill, and Passaic Valley, then go on to face Dwight Morrow again for the third time in the first round of their state sectional bracket.

When asked about how he feels about playing Dwight Morrow again, Golden said, “It sucks that they have gotten us twice, but if we stay strong defensively, we have a good shot at victory.” With a win, the Hawks would likely go on to play Ramapo in the second round, but Golden isn’t on that yet, “We aren’t thinking about that yet, we are focused on Dwight Morrow and securing that win.”

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