Henry Weltman and the Lakeland Hornets had been anticipating a performance of this ilk from Chris Fazio. It was a time bomb, just a matter of ticks before the high-volume scoring guard/forward's explosion was felt by the Section I masses.
Fazio turned in a triple double Monday night, scoring 16 points, pulling down 11 boards, and dishing out 10 dimes. His show-stealing performance helped catapult the Hornets to a pivotal 77-60 trouncing of Mahopac.
The streaky, paltry-or-plenty Hornets have obviously been night and day this year (habitually scoring a signature win and then following it up with an ugly loss)so this win is indicative of just how potent this deep team could be when the chemistry clicks on all cylinders.
Alex Pearlman, the Hornets' rangy sophomore guard with mid-range game and a feathery touch, led all scorers with a game and season-high 20 points.
Fazio, a three-year varsity player, dropped 30 points and tore down 19 rebounds against Carmel earlier this season.
He was dancing around the defense and exploded for an extravagant two-handed banger. The senior's then-career night lifted a streaky Hornets team to a much-needed league win. Apparently, Fazio's emergence as a buzz saw during the barometer game was a harbinger of things to come....As a sweet passing forward, Weltman and company had been waiting for a game where the multi-tool talent goes bizerk and stuffs the stat sheet like a Thanksgiving Turkey. The triple-double notch was missing from his belt...
Until last night.
Think The FAZ has cemented his spot on the All-Section team? Let us know...
Just when it appeared as if YORKTOWN had turned a corner and was heading into the league's high-rent district, they hit a major pothole during their stop in Carmel. The Rams rode the hot hands of Alex Grace (14 points) and Mike Rooney (12 points), both of whom spearheaded a balanced scoring attack that lifted the Rams to a 58-44 thrashing of the Cornhuskers, who were coming off one of their best all-around victories of the season against Class B stalwart Kennedy-Catholic.
If the win over the Gaels proved anything, it was that Yorktown's success would entail a little bit less of the backcourt and a little more of the potentially radiant 1-2 punch of bruising behemoth Jacob Mercado and 6-foot-4 freshman Chris Schmidt down low.
It turned out the Huskers suffered from meager offensive production overall, with the trio of Moody, Mercado and Matt Fedro accounting for a staggering 33 of the Huskers' 44 total points. A three man gang can't hang fellas...
It also didn't help that the Huskers, deadlocked after the first quarter, underwent a severe second half meltdown.
Moody, still feeling lingering effects of a stomach virus (he wasn't even supposed to suit up against JFK, as he was looking for a place to vomit following his 16 point, four assist performance that helped lift the Huskers Friday night) led Yorktown with 14 points. With the loss, the Huskers drop to 6-9 on the season.
CARMEL opened up its bench. Cast members came in and made an immediate impact, supplementing Rooney's fireworks. The Rams pieced together a second half power surge, outscoring Yorktown 14-7 as their bulge ballooned in the fourth quarter.
Beyond Grace and Rooney, guard Aaron Smith and Mike Loughron each contributed 8. Victor Satlov and Bashkim Rugova added six apiece, while Ryan Schilling chipped in with four. The Rams bounced back from an embarassing 57-56 upset loss at the hands of Saunders HS, a Section I laughingstock that's won just two games this season. The Rams have won two of their last three against league foes, both double-digit wins.