By Ted Waddell
LAKE HUNTINGTON December 24, 2004 Despite falling behind 21-16 at the end of the first quarter, the home team hoopsters of Sullivan West rallied in the remaining periods in Tuesdays non-league boys varsity basketball game to defeat Monticello, 64-56.
The game between the Bulldogs and the Monti Panthers was played at SWs new high school overlooking Lake Huntington.
At the final buzzer, Monticellos Brad Cooper electrified the crowd by making a 3-point shot from more than halfway across the court.
SW (5-1) had a trio of players reach double digits. Sean Kelly (a game-high 23 points), Joe Meyer (11) and John Nober (10).
For Monticello (5-2), Sinan Tertimez netted 18 points and Cooper added 15 points.
Stats from the free throw line: SW went 16-for-23 (70 percent); Monticello was 7-for-12 (58 percent).
We had a bad first quarter, because we just had to get used to the pace of play, SW Coach Rick Ellison said.
Under the leadership of Coach Dick ONeill, Monticello is known as a fast-paced team on both offense and defense.
They were forcing us into a lot of mistakes with their pressure, but once we got used to the pace of the game we settled down, Ellison said.
When you beat Monticello, youre doing something, he added. Theyre real well coached, and they force you into making mistakes
youve got to take care of the ball against them.
The Bulldogs top dog credited the performance of a trio of players as integral to the games outcome.
Ellison noted that Sean Kelly played a real strong game, John Nober did a nice job in there until he got into foul trouble and Joe Winski was fabulous
he hit a couple of big shots and got a lot of rebounds.
Ellison, who guides the Bulldogs along with Assistant Coaches Cliff Kelly and Bob Menges, described the game against the Panthers as a test of how well his players could do against a team brimming with speed and intensity.
We passed the test, he said. They came through, and thats what I was looking for.