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By Scott Huff
Central Bucks South hosted rival Central Bucks East with full intentions of winning the Suburban One Continental Conference championship.
There was a trash can full of blue and white confetti to be tossed on coach Jason Campbell after the game. There was the mock championship banner with 2008-2009 CB South Titans proudly displayed on it. And there was a ladder and scissors courtside for the players and coaches to cut down the nets.
South did not disappoint the hometown fans as the Titans never trailed in the game and rolled to a 58-36 victory over East. South earned an outright title as Central Bucks West was upset by Hatboro-Horsham, 54-50, and was jettisoned from a conference co-championship.
“This is what three years of dedication and hard work can do for a team,” said Titan senior Will Barrett who scored a game-high 23 points. “This is a great feeling for the seven seniors who have been a part of this program.”
“This team is so close – we’re really a family,” said South senior guard Greg Johnston. “Coach Campbell is such a positive person and a positive coach.”
“It was really great that we could get the banner,” said Titan senior Mike Doty – who transferred to CB South from Germantown Academy for his senior season. “It is an awesome feeling, and this whole experience has been great.”
The basketball title was the first ever for South.
“This was a great win for everyone in the Central Bucks South basketball program,” said Campbell. “The players, the coaches, the parents – everyone.
“I told the kids before the game that we were going to just play to win,” continued Campbell. “Our first goal for the season was to win a conference championship, and now we have done that.”
East coach Chris Huber tipped his hat to the Titans.
“CB South is one of the best teams in the district,” the Patriots’ coach said. “When the seeding committee gets together this weekend, South has got to be one of the highest seeds.”
The Titans did what CB West could not do on the final night of the regular season – win.
The game got of to a slooooooooooooooooooooow start as the first score – by CB South’s Mike Pincus – came over three minutes into the game. And when the horn sounded to close the first period, South led by a 9-4 score.
“It was typical South-East basketball there at the beginning,” said Campbell. “Both teams had the jitters, and we were finally able to settle down in the second period.”
The Titans went on a 14-4 run at the outset of the period to take control of the game. In that run, South scored on a pair of Pincus three-pointers to go along with three-pointers by Barrett and Matt Kavalek.
Barrett would score nine points in the period to fuel the Titan offense. The halftime margin was 29-15 in favor of South.
“I actually felt that we did a good job of defending Barrett,” said Huber. “He stepped up tonight. He is a very difficult match up for us.”
“You might get a player like Will once in a lifetime,” said Campbell. “He has been fighting a bad back recently, but he doesn’t complain. He is a great teammate.”
“The past few games my shot has been a little off,” said Barrett. “But I felt pretty good about my shot all night tonight.”
The Titan lead swelled to 44-25 by the close of the third period. Doty – who finished with 12 points – helped Barrett with the scoring load.
“Mike has been a great addition to our team,” said Campbell. “He is a versatile player, and a great leader.”
Leadership is going to come to the head of the class as both South and East prepare for competition in the upcoming PIAA District One playoffs.
“We’ve been looking forward to the playoffs,” said Huber. “We have played well in the past during the playoffs, and we will have that opportunity again.
“Right now we’re a little worn down, and the week off before the playoffs will help,” continued Huber. “We’ll lick our wounds, and we’ll come back.”
“We have been a very focused team all season,” said Campbell. “I’m sure we’ll enjoy what we won tonight, but nobody is going to hand us anything in the playoffs.”
“The season is just starting for us tonight,” said Doty. “We want to come out of this season with something more than a league championship.”
“The playoffs are going to be at a much faster pace,” said Barrett. “And the games will be much more physical. But we will be prepared.”
Just like Central Bucks South was prepared to win an SOL Continental Conference.
“We knew we were going to win,” said Johnston. “We worked way too hard not to.”
FREE THROWS – Barrett was one of 1500 scholastic players to be nominated to the McDonald’s All-American team – 24 players actually make the squad… CB East shot just 4-for-18 from the free throw line … The Patriots were led in scoring by Chris Harmon who scored 12 points … South swept all four games this season against sister schools CB West and CB East for the first time in school history … In addition to Barrett, Doty, Johnston and Kavalek – other senior members of the Titans are Ryan Clark, Alex Dedeian, and Ian Gordon … South assistant coaches are Louie Ditri, Matt Timmins, Josh Williams, and Kevin Dougherty.
Central Bucks East 4 11 10 11 - 36
Central Bucks South 9 20 13 16 - 58
Central Bucks East: Dave Kiersnowski 2 1-2 5; Tim McLaughlin 0 0-1 0; Craiger Eschelman 3 1-2 8; Brandon Boekel 1 0-3 2; Scott Schneider 0 0-2 0; Chris Harmon 5 2-5 12; Skylar Scrivaro 2 0-2 4; Scott Shields 1 0-1 2; Grant Menard 1 0-0 3. Totals 14 4-18 36.
3-point field goals – Eschelman, Menard.
Central Bucks South: Mike Pincus 3 0-0 8; Ian Gordon 1 0-0 2; Mike Doty 4 3-4 12; Will Barrett 10 1-2 23; Ryan Clark 0 2-2 2; Matt Kavalek 1 2-2 5; Greg Johnston 1 0-1 2; Nick Joerger 1 0-1 2; Alex Dedeian 1 0-0 2. Totals 22 8-12 58.
3-point field goals – Pincus (2), Barrett (2), Doty, Kavalek.