HOPATCONG — Roxbury rallied from a 10-point deficit with 2:49 left to defeat West Morris 47-46 and capture the Hopatcong Summer League title on Tuesday.
Anthony McMyne had back-to-back scores in the final 30 seconds to cap an 11-0 run for the Gaels in the championship game of the 10-team tournament that was held at the old Hopatcong High School gym. Doug Alexander also put in a solid performance for the Gaels. West Morris had a strong game from guard Conor Barron.
Roxbury led 24-15 at halftime due to the strong effort of Alexander, the team’s senior forward. West Morris rallied during the 16-minute second half with the help of strong outside shooting. The Wolfpack went on an amazing 17-0 run. Back-to-back scores by Barron gave West Morris a 38-36 lead at the seven-minute mark. The Wolfpack kept their momentum going. A 3-point shot and jumper by Barron capped the spree and gave the Wolfpack a 46-36 edge with 2:49 left.
Pressure defense and timely offense helped Roxbury chip away and go on a run of its own. Alexander contributed a bucket and a pair of free throws. After a West Morris turnover, Roxbury’s Dante Sworn knocked down a 3-pointer from the right side to make it 46-43 with 56 seconds left. A missed Wolfpack free throw off a one-and-one led to a McMyne jumper. Then a steal off the inbounds set up a McMyne layup with 18 seconds left to give the Gaels the lead, 47-46. West Morris had the last shot but a jumper bounced off the rim as the buzzer sounded.
West Morris’ Sean McElwaine drives to the hoop during first-half action. (Photo by Mark Kitchin)
The Hopatcong Summer League has a five-day, two-games-a-day regular season that determines the tournament seeding. Roxbury was the fifth-seeded team in the tournament and defeated fourth-seeded Sparta and top-seeded Dover in Monday’s playoffs to get to the title game. A girls version of the Hopatcong Summer League begins next week.
Winners of the Hopatcong Summer League earn nothing but a lot of sweat and a pat on the back but historically the teams that win the title tend to have a successful winter season. The Roxbury team was coached by Jon Deeb. It’s members during summer league included: Alexander, McMyne, Sworn, Dan Denure, Brett Osetec, Jack Clevenger, Nick Anderson, Chris Dacey and Rob Tagliente.
Jon Deeb gives his Roxbury players some advice. (Photo by Mark Kitchin)