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October 24, 2007

Metro Hawks Take Gaucho Roundball Classic Title

It was an all-out Metro Hawks assault at Gaucho's Gym on Sunday. The Hawks; pitted against the Gaucho's in the championship game of the 2007 Gauchos Roundball Classic proved to have too much depth and talent for their opponent as they cruised to a 93-75 blowout victory.

The Metro Hawks spurted out to an early lead in the first half as a 14-3 run gave them a 29-19 edge. Nationally top -ranked recruit Dexter Strickland (St. Patricks) led the charge for the Metro Hawks during the run as he scored 16 of the 29 team points. "He is a great combo guard," said Bishop Ford junior guard and Hofstra commit, Chaz Williams. "It's always good play with someone who can score."

Gaucho's would respond to the Strickland attack with a 7-1 run of their own but it would not matter as the Metro Hawks closed the half with a 17-4 run and were in complete control. Strickland was brilliant from the perimeter in the first half and also showed tenacity for attacking the basket. However, the Hawks also received a huge lift inside as Derrick Williams seemed to find every rebound for a put back. The 6'8 sophomore forward finished the first half with 12 points, eight rebounds, and three blocks.


In the second half the Metro Hawks poured it on as, Mt. Vernon senior, Winston Graham playing in his first tournament with the Hawks put on a shooting clinic. Graham (20 pts, 4ast) knocked down five three pointers in the second half . "I just showed up," said Graham of his second half lights out shooting. "We worked hard in practice and this win feels good."

The Hawks continued to relentlessly push the ball in the second half. Chaz Williams (5 assists) led the attack penetrating deep into the lane and creating easy opportunities for his teammates. Williams who finished with 13 points relishes the opportunity to play in tournaments such as the Gaucho Roundball Classic because he realizes what it can do for his overall game. "I can be one of the top players," said Williams. "(These games) help me a lot. I am going to go back to school this week and work on what I messed up on in tonight's game."

The Gaucho's never got back into the game as the Hawks led by as many as 21 points before the final buzzer. Bishop Loughlin sophomore Doron Lamb led the Gaucho's with 23 points. The short handed Gaucho's dressed only six players and played without Rice senior Kemba Walker but their six players included Rice High Schools, Chris Fouch and St. Ray's Omari Lawrence. The deeper Metro Hawks wore out the Gaucho's with their run and gun style and that strategy proved to be a good one. "We came out pretty sharp and finished strong," said head coach JR. "It was all self-motivation. It's the championship game and everyone knows that we have to step up and play." If the Metro Hawks talented roster continues to step up and play then they will be tough to beat in future tournaments.

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