Josh Serrano had 31 points and eight assists to lead Amityville to a 75-60 victory over Center Moriches in the Suffolk ABCD boys basketball final Monday night at Floyd High School.
But perhaps the biggest basket of the game was made by freshman Myles Goddard. His three-pointer with two minutes left gave Amityville a 10-point lead and some much-needed breathing room.
“I was missing a lot in the beginning of the game,” Goddard said. “But I knew I had to keep shooting. I had an open shot, just let it fly and it went in.”
The situation may have seemed too large for a freshman to handle, but as Amityville coach Gordon Thomas put it, Goddard is “no ordinary freshman.”
“He has ice water in his veins,” Thomas said. “We call him ‘Buckets.’ When he took that shot, I knew it was going in. I could see the rotation [of the ball]. But for a freshman to take a shot like that just goes to show you that he has no fear. And that’s great.”
Amityville (23-1) will face the winner of Tuesday’s Class AA championship game between Deer Park and Half Hollow Hills East in the overall Suffolk final on Friday at Farmingdale State.
“I’m trying to go there every year,” Goddard said.
Serrano helped make sure the Warriors will be there this year, hitting all six of his free throws in the second half. Jayson Robinson totaled 10 points, 10 steals and eight assists.
In the final minute, Serrano jumped between three Center Moriches defenders and grabbed a loose ball. He was fouled, sank two free throws and put Amityville ahead by 15 points with 14 seconds left.
After trailing by two at halftime, the Warriors outscored Center Moriches (20-3) by 42-25 in the second half.
“At first, we were weak on defense and didn’t box out enough,” Serrano said. “But during the second half, we turned it up and had confidence in every shot.”Amityville will have at least two more games this season. In addition to Friday’s Suffolk overall final, the Warriors will play in the Long Island Class A championship game against the Nassau Class A champion, yet to be determined, on March 10. That matchup will determine whether they will head to Binghamton for the public school state tournament March 17-18.
Although Friday’s contest is not an elimination game, Thomas said he will be careful to make sure his team doesn’t overlook it.
“Everyone says [the game] doesn’t mean anything,” he said. “But to me and to them, it does mean something.”