It was Senior Night at Roslyn. Or as coach Craig Murphy put it during the pregame ceremony to honor his five graduating guys: "This is always a bittersweet night."
Garden City tilted it even more toward the bitter side, claiming an important conference game.
The Trojans took over sole possession of first place in the tight Nassau A-II race with Friday’s 52-37 win.
They rode six threes and 24 points from junior guard Leonidas Vlogianitis and an aggressive 2-3 zone that held Roslyn’s standout senior guard, Spyro Drenis, to just nine points.
So they are 11-3 overall and 7-2 in the conference with three games left. The Trojans have already clinched a Class A playoff berth.
"Obviously to go as far as we can," Vlogianitis said. "We’ve got a great team. Everyone works hard. Everyone can score, the whole team. We all pass well. We play hard in practice."
The Bulldogs dropped two games back at 5-4 and fell to 8-7 overall.
"We need one more conference win to qualify (for the playoffs), and then we just need to play better," Murphy said.
Drenis showed up second in the county for scoring, averaging 23.4 points. But he didn’t score until he nailed his first of three threes with 4:53 left.
"He’s such a good player," Murphy said. "Everybody, rightfully so, is trying to stop him."
Garden City jumped out to a 19-4 lead after one quarter. Joseph Wood scored seven of his nine points and Vlogianitis hit two threes. Tarell Joseph also scored four of his 13.
When Jackson Perisa drove hard for two with 1:21 left until the break, the Trojans owned a 22-point cushion at 28-6. It ended up 28-11 at halftime.
"We played a great 2-3 zone," Trojans coach Jim Hegmann said. "We’ve been working on that. They have a great team. They have great shooters. They’re well coached. Spyro is a tremendous shooter. We wanted to focus on him. … With our athleticism, we really move well in the 2-3."
Vlogianitis can shoot, too. He let go from the left side and buried his fifth three, giving Garden City a 41-23 advantage to take into the fourth.
"If I get the ball passed to me, I’ll shoot it if I’m open," Vlogianitis said. "That’s pretty much it. I don’t look to force shots."