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Liberty's Goals Met


Democrat Photo by Ted Waddell

ALL UP FOR IT: Fallsburg’s Charles Robinson (24) has a hand on a rebound, beating out Liberty’s Travis Emery (40) and Evan Mullen (partially hidden, next to Robinson). Michael Roycroft of Fallsburg (21) and Chris Sinceno of Liberty (30) look on. Liberty handed Fallsburg both of its league losses.

Basketball Team Wins Titles

By Ted Waddell
LIBERTY — March 24, 2000 -- The Liberty Indians boys’ varsity basketball team captured a couple of brass rings this season, racking up a 20–3 record overall and the Orange County League (OCL) National Conference and Section IX—Class C titles.
The Indians’ season ended against Pleasantville in the opening round of the state tournament.
“All our goals and expectations were met this year,” said Ed Riente, longtime Liberty coach. “We wanted to win the OCL and be in contention for the Section IX championship. I thought we reached all the goals I thought we could reach”
Riente gave these assessments of his players:
*Chris Sinceno: led the team with 16.8 points per game; also averaged 5.9 rebounds and 2.6 assists. “He’s the guy we always placed on the [opposition’s] best offensive player… we looked for him to shoot from the outside and penetrate to the inside.”
*Jonathan Tanous: averaged 14 points per game and 2.4 assists. “Our all-around utility man...shot well in a couple of games… in the [National Conference championship] game against Cornwall, we might have been out of it except that he scored 14 points in the first half and 19 in the game.”
*Evan Mullen: averaged 13 points per game and six rebounds. “Very athletic with his jump shooting ability… controlled most of the offensive boards, and along with Travis Emery most of the defensive boards.”
*Travis Emery: averaged 10.1 points per game; and led his team with nine rebounds and four blocks per game. “He was our intimidator on the inside… forced his opponents to take their shots outside their normal sets because he was so big and such a good shot blocker… he controlled it inside the paint…we relied on him to get the rebounds so we could have a quick transition and get our running game going.”
*Mike Poje: averaged 4.4 points per game and led the Indians with 5.9 assists per game. “His greatest asset was his tenacious defense and hustle… he would fight for any loose ball… he wasn’t one of our top scorers, but he was the guy we looked for to put pressure on the ball, and the guy we depended upon to get the ball into Sinceno and Emery.”
According to Riente, the weakest part of Liberty’s game this year was foul shooting.
“As a team, we shot about 62-percent from the foul line this year,” he said.
What about next year?
“It’s looking promising,” said Riente, noting the Liberty hoopsters are moving up a class in competition, from Class C to Class B as the enrollment has grown.
“We have a good nucleus coming back, and I think our bench this year was pretty solid with Chris Winters, Nick Yaun (“he didn’t get as much playing time this year as I would have liked, but I think he’s going to be a surprise next year) and Jose Valentine (“he came off the bench a couple of times this season and scored double figures),” said Riente.
“Those three guys coming off the bench will be starters next year,” he added.
Riente said he’s got his eye on a couple of up and coming jayvee players including freshman Nick Christian.
The Indians will be losing seniors Sinceno and Mullen to graduation. Returning for the 2000-2001 season are starters Emery, Poje and Tanous, all juniors this year.

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