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The Elmont Spartans beat Harborfields Tornadoes, 41-32, in the Long Island Class AA boys basketball final on Sunday, March 6, 2016 at LIU Post. (Artwork by iLuvBBall.com)

Source: Tony Bellissimo, Long Island Herald

Defense wins championships, especially when you don’t allow any points in the final 11 minutes and 25 seconds as Elmont did Sunday afternoon on the way to beating Harborfields, 41-32, for the Long Island Class A boys’ basketball title before a crowd of 2,750 at LIU Post.

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Elmont teammates celebrate after their 41-32 win over Harborfields in the Long Island Class A boys basketball championship at LIU Post on Sunday, March 6, 2016. (Photo courtesy of James Escher for Newsday)

The Spartans, who trailed by as many as five points in the third quarter, scored the last dozen of the game to avenge a one-point loss to Harborfields in the Nassau-Suffolk Challenge on Jan. 16 and capture their first-ever L.I. crown. Senior Jalen Burgess poured in a game-high 16 points, including a clutch trey with 3:45 remaining to extend the lead to seven.

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Jalen Burgess, left, and Yasir Lawrence of Elmont react as their team closes in on a 41-32 win over Harborfields in the Long Island Class A boys basketball championship at LIU Post on Sunday, March 6, 2016. (Photo courtesy of James Escher for Newsday)

“It feels great to redeem ourselves after they beat us earlier in the season when I missed two free throws at the end,” Burgess said. “I’m glad we won the one that really counted.

“I didn’t realize they didn’t score in the fourth quarter,” he added. “We always take pride in defense.”

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KC Ndefo of Elmont attempts to drive to the hoop during the Long Island Class A boys basketball championship against Harborfields at LIU Post on Sunday, March 6, 2016. (Photo courtesy of James Escher for Newsday)

Elmont head coach George Holub, whose pet peeve is to hold opponents under 50, was also unaware of his team’s defensive perfection after Nick Mitchell’s backdoor layup gave the Tornadoes a 32-29 lead with 3:25 left in the third quarter.

“I had no idea,” Holub said. “But it’s a testament to these kids. We preach defense. We play a zone but we match up so well it looks like a man-to-man. We needed to step up and stop their outside shots.”

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Travis Robinson-Morgan of Elmont surveys the court during the Long Island Class A boys basketball championship against Harborfields at LIU Post on Sunday, March 6, 2016. (Photo courtesy of James Escher for Newsday)

Travis Robinson-Morgan added nine points, Yasir Lawrence had eight, and KC Ndefo chipped in six for the Spartans (21-3), who advance to the state Class A Final Four in Glens Falls. They’ll face Byram Hills (Section I) on Saturday [March 12th, 2016] at 10:45 a.m.

Source: Tony Bellissimo, Long Island

 

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