FAME Elite from Clarksburg, Md. used a strong inside-outside offensive combination to end a six-game NEPA Elite Basalyga 17U boys winning streak with a 77-67 victory to decide the top spot in the Open Division A Pool of the Hoop Group’s Labor Day Jam Fest at Competitive Edge Sports in King of Prussia.
Both teams went 2-0 in the four-team pool Saturday, assuring that the only Sunday game would decide the top two spots in the pool.
FAME Elite turned 16 offensive rebounds into 24 second-chance points, paving the way to victory.
In addition to grabbing 10 more offensive rebounds that NEPA Elite, FAME Elite also hit nine 3-pointers, including seven in a stretch of 7:03 spanning the end of the first half and the start of the second half.
The 3-point barrage turned a 21-20 game with 3:43 left in the half into a 49-35 advantage with 11:40 to play.
FAME Elite’s first 10 points of the second half came on two 3-pointers, then a four-point play on another 3-pointer while being fouled.
NEPA Elite led most of the game’s first nine minutes. The last lead, 15-13, was erased by seven straight FAME Elite points.
FAME Elite built the lead as high as 21 with 7:15 left before an NEPA Elite comeback closed the deficit to 75-67 on a Jason Shields 3-pointer with 36 seconds left.
Shields, a rising junior guard/forward from Scranton, led NEPA Elite in scoring for the second straight game. He hit four of the team’s seven 3-pointers while scoring 23 points, 16 of which came in the second half.
Nick Nocito and Austin Finarelli, junior guards from Dallas, also finished in double figures.
Nocito had 18 points, leading the team in the first half with 12. He also dished out five assists.
Harry Johnson, a senior forward from Abington Heights, led the team in rebounds with eight and blocked shots with two while also scoring six points.
Brandon Roche from Scranton Prep did not miss a shot while adding seven points.