Four champions crowned in Center basketball
|Duncan Real Estate's Chris Callahan drives to the basket as Molly Slicker defends for her Oyster Bar team during the Division II championship game.
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The Anna Maria Island Community Center basketball league season came to an end on Saturday, Feb. 26, with championship games in Premier and Division I and III. As expected, Anna Maria Glass & Screen claimed the Premier division trophy, while Bistros completed an undefeated season in Division III. Fourth-seeded LPAC upset No. 1 seed Publix before defeating Air & Energy to win the Division I championship.
Saturday's action also boasted All-Star games and the always-entertaining coaches game. Friday, Feb. 25, saw Anna Maria Oyster Bar upset top-seeded Duncan Real Estate to win the Division II championship.
Congratulations to all of the players, coaches and parents for another great season of basketball at the Center.
Bistros put finishing touch on 14-0 season
Hailey Dearlove exploded for 14 points in the third quarter to turn a close game into a 13-point lead in the Division III championship on Saturday. Bistros and Dips Ice Cream battled to an 8-6 Bistro lead in the first quarter. Dearlove scored four points, while Stephanie Purnell and Becca Butler each scored a basket from the paint for the Bistros. Zach Guerin sandwiched four points around an offensive rebound and a layup from Justin Gargett to help Dips stay within two points.
Bistros extended its lead to 13-8 behind three points from Butler and four points from Dearlove, but Jerry Mayer scored on an offensive rebound putback and Guerin connected from 15 feet along the baseline to pull Dips to within five points as the half came to a close.
Dearlove then took over in the third with three steals, four rebounds and 14 points to open up a 29-16 lead the
Bistros would not relinquish.
Dearlove finished with 26 points, 10 rebounds, four steals and three assists, while Butler finished with five points, eight rebounds and two blocks. Purnell scored two points and pulled down four rebounds to complete the scoring for Bistros. Other members of the team are Giorgio Gomez, Denver Hardy, Dayle Hoffman, Alyssa Mills and Emily Rappe.
Zach Guerin's 14 points led Dips, which also received four points from Justin Gargett and two points apiece from Johnny Mattay and Jerry Meyer in the loss.
Bistros 22, Harry's 10
Hailey Dearlove scored 12 points and Stephanie Purnell added six to lead Bistros past Harry's Continental Kitchens on Thursday, Feb. 24, in Division III playoff action. Giorgio Gomez and Dayle Hoffman each added two points to the Bistros total.
Cliff Pascal scored six points and Danny Krokroskia and Zach Facheris added two points apiece in the loss for Harry's.
Dips 22, Jessie's 11
Eight points from Jerry Meyer and seven points from Justin Gargett carried Dips Ice Cream past Jessie's Island Store on Thursday, Feb. 24. Zach Guerin added four points and Johnny Mattay chipped in with three points in the Dips victory.
Daniel Pimental scored five points and Julian Botero scored four points to lead Jessie's in the loss. Jack Titsworth completed the scoring for Jessie's with two points.
Oyster Bar holds on for upset victory
Anna Maria Oyster Bar picked a fine time for its first victory over Duncan Real Estate when they defeated the No. 1 seed 29-26 in overtime to claim the Division II championship.
The teams traded baskets early on before Evans' rebound putback and a jumper from the foul line by Molly Slicker with 55 seconds remaining in the first quarter gave the Oyster Bar an 8-4 lead.
Bauer drove into the lane for a lay up and a 10-4 Oyster Bar lead thanks to a great screen by Sarah Howard, but Duncan came back with four straight points on a pair of foul shots by Ashley Waring and a driving layup by Chris Callahan.
Oyster Bar answered with a four-point run of its own when Bauer and Evans both made free throws and Howard scored on a offensive rebound putback for a 14-8 halftime lead.
The Oyster Bar opened up an 11-point lead when Nicole Botero snagged a rebound and quickly threw upcourt to Bauer, who was fouled while scoring on a layup making the score 19-11.
The Oyster Bar slowed the game down to work some time off the clock and Duncan rallied. Callahan scored seven fourth-quarter points to help Duncan pull to 24-22 with 1:37 to play.
The teams traded possessions, but neither team was able to score as the clock ticked down. With 14 seconds to play, Oyster Bar had an inbounds play under its basket. They got the ball inside to Evans, but his shot rimmed out and Waring grabbed the rebound. She quickly threw the ball upcourt to Callahan, who made a driving layup with two seconds remaining to tie the score at 24-24.
Botero opened the scoring in the 3-minute overtime when she banked in a 15-footer to give Oyster Bar a 26-24 lead. Oyster Bar extended its lead to 28-24 when Botero found Howard down low for a turn-around banker. Evans then got fouled and made one foul shot with 45 seconds left for a 29-24 lead.
Chandler McClung scored underneath with 19 seconds left to play as time ran out on Duncan Real Estate.
Matt Bauer scored 12 points to lead the Oyster Bar, which also received nine points from Zach Evans and four points from Howard in the victory. Botero and Molly Slicker each added two points to the Oyster Bar total in victory. Other Oyster Bar members include Kelly Dodson, Katie Hunt and Blake Rivers.
Callahan finished with 14 points and Ashley Waring added eight points to lead Duncan Real Estate in the loss. Alexis Mitchell and McClung completed the Duncan scoring with two points each.
Oyster Bar 22, STGC 14
Anna Maria Oyster Bar overcame a 12-3 halftime deficit to record a 22-14 victory over Steve Titsworth General Contracting on Monday, Feb. 21, to advance to the Division II finals. Matt Bauer scored 11 of his game-high 13 points after intermission to lead the Oyster Bar back from the brink of defeat. Zach Evans added six points, Kelly Dodson added two points and Blake Rivers finished with one point for the Oyster Bar in the victory.
Ally Titsworth scored nine points to lead STGC, which also received three points from Molly McDonough and two points from Chandler Hardy in defeat.
Duncan 33, Danziger 19
Duncan Real Estate received a balanced scoring attack led by Chris Callahan's 13 points on Monday, Feb. 21, to record a 33-19 semifinal win over Danziger Allergy & Sinus. Kyle Crum and Ashley Waring each added eight points, while Chandler McClung completed the scoring for Duncan with four points in the victory.
Eleven points from Emma Barlow and six points from Glenn Bower paced the Danziger scoring attack, which also received two points from Sarah Oldham in the loss.
LPAC completes worst-to-first Division I trip
LPAC came into the playoffs as the No. 4 seed, giving them the longest odds to win the Division I championship, but they ignored the odds and just went out and played hard and somehow won.
Their first order of business was taking on No. 1 seed Publix in the semifinals on Thursday, Feb 24. LPAC, which lost three out of four games to Publix this season, received 22 points from Broderick West, 13 points from Matt Shafer and 11 points from Ryan Guerin to fuel the upset victory. Whitney Bauer, Jarot Nelson and Jason Rappe completed the LPAC scoring with two points apiece.
Justin Dearlove scored 22 points and Ben Valdivieso added 18 points for Publix in the loss. Breann Richardson added four points and Egan Fridenberg scored three points to complete the Publix scoring.
The Division I championship game between LPAC and third-place Air & Energy was a tale of two games. Air & Energy held a slim lead when A&E center Garrett Secor fell hard, injuring his wrist, late in the first half. Losing its best inside player was bad enough, but A&E had no subs, so they were forced to go the rest of the way with only four players.
LPAC took advantage, outscoring A&E 36-18 in the second half. Secor made one last valiant try at playing, but he was in too much pain.
Matt Shafer scored 20 points and Broderick West added 18 to lead LPAC in the victory. Jason Rappe chipped in with eight points, while Ryan Guerin scored six and Jarot Nelson finished with two points.
Corbin Kitchen led all scorers with 26 points, while teammate Kevin Callahan added three points. Kyle Seawall, Jordan Sebastiano and Secor finished with two points apiece in defeat.
A&E 37, Observer 34
Air & Energy outscored Longboat Observer 12-3 in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 5-2 in overtime Feb. 23 and defeat the Observer to advance to the Division I championship game.
Secor finished with a game-high 17 points, while Corbin Kitchen added 12 points for Air & Energy, which also received four points from Jordan Sebastiano and two points apiece from Kevin Callahan and Will Osborne.
Celia Ware scored 16 points and Grant Lukitch added 10 points to lead the Observer. Nash Thompson added four points for the Observer, which also received two points apiece from Daniel Riley and Billy Alstrom in defeat.
Anna Maria Glass employs 'Buck shot' for win
David Buck was unstoppable in leading Anna Maria Glass & Screen to a 70-59 victory over West Coast Air Conditioning on Saturday, Feb. 26, to win the Premier league championship game going away.
Buck nailed eight three-pointers on the way to a game-high 32 points while also pulling down 19 rebounds and handing out five assists. Jake Stebbins chipped in with 19 points and eight rebounds, while Chad Reed and Matt McDonough finished with eight and five points respectively. Eric Distelhurst, Derrick Gargett, Sarah Lanzillo and Zach Schields completed the scoring with two points apiece.
After battling to a 32-30 lead, Buck went off, nailing four three pointers in the third quarter as Glass & Screen increased its lead from two points to 14 points. West Coast tried gamely to rally, but every time they made a move, Buck simply drained another three-pointer to snuff out the rally.
West Coast Air's Clay Orr scored 33 points to lead all scorers, while Taylor Manning added 16 points. Brian Cziraky scored five points and Eric Fridenbergy had one three-pointer to complete the scoring for West Coast Air in defeat.
West Coast Air 66, IRE 53
Clay Orr scored 28 points and Eric Fridenberg added 18 points as West Coast Air Conditioning cooled off Island Real Estate on Wednesday, Feb. 23. Dylan Mullen scored eight points and Taylor Manning added six points for West Coast, which also received two points apiece from Brian Cziraky, Jake McDonald and Todd Test in the victory.
Island Real Estate was led by 23 points from Tyler Bekkerus and 21 points from Josh Elsenheimer. Ian Douglas added five points and Phelps Tracy scored four points to complete the IRE scoring in the loss.
Glass & Screen 75, ReMax 55
David Buck scored 26 points and Jacob Stebbins scored 19 points to lead Anna Maria Glass & Screen past ReMax Gulfstream Realty on Monday, Feb. 21. Chad Reed finished with 10 points and Eric Distelhurst added nine points for Glass & Screen, which also received seven points from Derrick Gargett and two points apiece from Matt McDonough and Zach Schields in the victory.
Twenty-two points from Chase Parker and 11 points from Spencer Carper paced ReMax in defeat. Luis Leon scored six points, while Franklin Moore and Kevin Gruenke contributed four points apiece and Alisha Ware and Jordan Graeff finished with three points each in the loss.