McCarthy Drops 25 to Lift Blue Devils
It was a wild game that you had to be there to appreciate. The Huntington High School boys' basketball team needed a win badly, but the consolation game of the Bob Grant Tip-Off Classic in Louis D. Giani Gymnasium was no cakewalk. It took a 39 point fourth quarter and a rain of three-pointers from senior John McCarthy to lift the Blue Devils over Bayport-Blue Point, 81-68 before a crowd of about 300.
There were plenty of turnovers, which drove coaches from both teams crazy, but each squad maintained fast paced offenses in the high-scoring affair. Huntington trailed by one point after the first quarter but managed to edge ahead by halftime, 30-29.
The teams traded scoring runs, but neither managed to break away from the other until the Blue Devils caught fire in the final frame. Remarkably, the teams scored a combined 67 points in the final eight minutes.
McCarthy, who pumped in 25 points to lead both teams, dropped a trio of three pointers to lead the fourth quarter onslaught and give Huntington its first victory of the winter. Blue Devil junior Patrick Reilly had 15 points and senior Jack Forster added 12. Junior Connor Birchard and sophomore David Casey scored 10 and nine points, respectively.
McCarthy enjoyed his best performance of the season, nailing four three-point baskets in the game, pulling down 11 rebounds and blocking four shots. Forster had a team-high 14 rebounds. Junior Devon Nelson added six points.
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A day earlier, Huntington fell behind Northport, 8-0 in the opening minutes before regrouping and making a game of it before a crowd of about 450.
The Blue Devils went on a 19-11 run to tie the game by halftime and set the stage for the final frenzied minutes. Both teams had an opportunity to open a lead, but missed shots and turnovers stymied them. Northport finally broke a 46-all tie with six seconds left.
Huntington called successive timeouts to set up the final sequence, but couldn't give off the last shot as the Tigers walked away with a 48-46 victory in the semi-finals of the Bob Grant Tip-Off Classic sponsored by the Suffolk Boys' Basketball Officials Assn.