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Goldbacks repeat as Section Nine Champs/ Regional Champs.. beat Mt. Vernon Off to States.. check site News

Coach Dinno Back to Back SEC 9 champ

Coach Dinno and the NFA Goldbacks are the defending Section Nine champs for the second year in a row and NOW Defending Regional Champs. Beat Mt. Vernon.. . Check site news  !!

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Boys' basketball: NFA still has something to prove

55-foot buzzer-beater last year opened door to Class AA title

Newburgh's Will Bouton hit a game-winning 3-pointer over Jordan Lessane of Mount Vernon at the end of their state quarterfinal on March 13, 2009. The teams meet again Saturday at West Point.Times Herald-Record/CHET GORDON

Times Herald-Record
March 13, 2010

They still talk about the shot in Newburgh.

And, of course, in Mount Vernon.

They always will.

Will Bouton's 55-foot desperation heave as time expired gave Newburgh a 71-70 win over the Westchester County power in the quarterfinals of last year's Class AA state tournament.

Newburgh would culminate its magical run with the Class AA state title.

But were the history-making Goldbacks lucky to get past their cross-Hudson River rivals in the state quarters?

Well, that's what Newburgh says it's heard for a year.

Maybe the Goldbacks are grasping for some motivation, but the defending champs think they still have something to prove against Mount Vernon.

"We have been preparing for this moment all season long and we can't wait to finally play them," said Newburgh senior Patrick Johnson. "We expected to play them. A lot of people think we shouldn't have won last year, so we want to show them we can beat Mount Vernon again."

Added Newburgh coach Frank Dinnocenzio: "This is what we live for. Some people think we got lucky last year, but we had to come back from six points down with (under a minute) left. Call it lucky or whatever you want, but it wasn't a fluke, it was a big win."

And fans thought Newburgh-Mount Vernon already had some juice.

Once again, spectators, players and coaches from all over the mid-Hudson — and beyond — will line up to enjoy the Newburgh-Mount Vernon experience. Three years ago in the state quarters, fans had to be turned away at packed SUNY New Paltz when the Goldbacks blew a 14-point lead in the third quarter, losing to Mount Vernon 58-56.

The teams packed Pace University in Pleasantville — and provided another dramatic show — last season. Section 9 officials are expecting at least 2,500 fans for Saturday's super power state quarterfinal showdown at West Point's Christl Arena. Capacity: Just over 5,000.

"This is something I will tell my kids about," Newburgh point guard Marcus Henderson said. "This is something that will look good on your résumé. We're going to come out at 100 miles per hour with a lot of intensity. We want to go fast the whole game."

Newburgh, 38-7 over the past two seasons, enters on a nine-game winning streak. Bishop Maginn is the last team to beat the defending champs — 60-56 on Jan. 31 at the Coaches vs. Cancer tournament at Siena College in Loudonville.

And just like Mount Vernon, the Goldbacks have talked about winning it all again this season.

Newburgh still feels like it has something to prove.

"We were the state champs, but this is a new season," Johnson said. "We want to prove to people we can beat Mount Vernon again and we know, it's going to be a real physical game, everyone is going to be in it."


State Class AA boys' basketball quarterfinals

Newburgh Free Academy vs. Mount Vernon

When: 3 p.m. Saturday

Where: Christl Arena, West Point

Team records: Newburgh 17-2; Mount Vernon 17-6

How they got here: Newburgh received an opening-round bye after beating Middletown 68-63 on Monday for the Section 9 title. Mount Vernon, the Section 1 champion the past four years, beat Binghamton-area champion Vestal 67-48 on Tuesday in an opening-round game.

Newburgh players to watch: Senior guard Mike McLeod (16.3 ppg); senior guard Marcus Henderson (10.8); senior guard Patrick Johnson (10.7); senior guard Damon Cousar (10.4); senior guard Will Bouton (9.9); senior guard Devon McMillan (9.1).

Mount Vernon players to watch: Junior guard Jabarie Hinds, who is considered a future Division I college player; junior guard Khalid Samuels; senior forward Brandon White.

Scouting report: This will be the fourth time these teams have played in the state tournament in the past five seasons. Mount Vernon won in 2006 and 2007. Newburgh won in 2009 on Will Bouton's 55-footer at the buzzer. Mount Vernon, ranked eighth in the state, lost this year at home for the first time since 1998. It has won eight state titles, the last in 2007. It is extremely motivated to avenge last year's loss. Both teams like to play at an up-tempo pace. Mount Vernon coach Bob Cimmino is regarded as one of the top coaches in the state. Defending state champion Newburgh returned all five starters from last year's team, and then added transfer McMillan - headed to Division I Hofstra. Newburgh is seasoned by a tough non-league schedule, but must shake off Monday's clunker against Middletown. Newburgh is ranked third.

Prediction: Newburgh

Kevin Witt




Newburgh-Mount Vernon at West Point

Saturday, 3 p.m. at Christl Arena…..This is a tremendous decision to move this game here. If you attend, make sure you give yourself plenty of time to get through the West Point checkpoint at the gates.