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Friday, March 9, 2018: Hudson leads Baldwin back to NYSPHSAA semis

   Leading off today: Aziah Hudson scored 18 of her 25 points in the first quarter as Baldwin blew out Commack 78-48 in the NYSPHSAA girls Class AA basketball quarterfinals Thursday.

   "Aziah's an assassin," coach Tom Catapano said. "She's the all-time leading scorer at Baldwin. She's been part of five county titles, three Long Island championships, a New York state title. That kid, she's left her legacy not only on this program but in this community."

   The defending New York State Public High School Athletic Association champions move on to next weekend's semifinals in Troy.

   The Bruins took a 31-9 lead after eight minutes. The margin at the half was 45-23.

   A 12-0 run by Commack early in the third quarter made things interesting, but Baldwin responded with a 17-0 run, including eight points from Jenna Annecchiarico.

   More girls basketball: In the Class A quarterfinals, Elmont smothered Hauppauge 56-30. The Spartans roared to a 43-7 advantage midway through the third quarter.

   Jada Fernandez paced the winners with 16 points, including nine in the first quarter.

    • Northeastern Clinton edged Canton 33-28 in a Class B first-round game as Abby Racine tallied a game-high 14 points.

   NYSPHSAA boys: Declan Porter scored 22 points as Canton moved into the quarterfinals with a 54-33 win against Peru in Class B. The Golden Bears took command with a 16-4 run in the second quarter.

   CK, Stepinac reach final: Sunday's CHSAA boys Class AA final is set following Christ the King's 72-64 win over Cardinal Hayes and Archbishop Stepinac's 88-84 victory over Archbishop Molloy.

   Senior Tyson Walker had a team high 21 points for Christ the King while junior Kofi Cockburn had 20 points and 19 rebounds.

   The Royals went on a 15-0 run in the first quarter to take a 24-10 lead.

   Stepinac advanced with 33 points from sophomore R.J. Davis, and 31 points from senior Alan Griffin.

   The win avenged a 70-69 loss to Molloy in the 2017 semifinals.

   Milestone: Larry Moreno scored 31 points in a PSAL playoff victory Thursday to go over 2,000 for his career.

   Moreno's performance carried Brooklyn Law & Technology to a 70-41 win over Manhattan's Martin Luther King Jr. in the Class A round of 16.

   Top-seeded Brooklyn L&T plays Transit Tech on Saturday in the quarterfinals.

   Moreno has 2,018 points for his career. He is the fourth

New York boy to reach the 2,000-point level this season, joining Miles Brown (Northstar Christian), Devin Pope (Chautauqua Lake) and Greg Dolan (Williamsville South).

   Girard earns honor: Gatorade has selected 3,000-point scorer Joe Girard III as its New York player of the year in boys basketball.

   The junior averaged 50 points per game as Glens Falls finished 20-3.

   Maryland intrigue: Coming off a 2-22 season, Rockville (Md.) High improved to 14-11 this season in boys basketball with the help of 16-year-old freshman Jimmy Sorunke, a 6-foot-10 Nigerian immigrant.

   Well, there seems to be more to the story -- namely that Sorunke might in fact be 20 years old and already attended college for a time in his homeland.

   That's the opinion of Deadspin reporter Dave McKenna, who lacks concrete evidence to support his theory but has dug up enough coincidences to make people think twice about Rockville's good fortune. Among them:

    • Photos and videos show Sorunke competing in an NBA-backed 3-on-3 event in Nigeria that was limited to participants ages 18-35.

    • A photo and profile of a 6-foot-11, then 18-year-old Olujimi Sorunke Abayomi from the website of the Nigerian entertainment promoter looks nearly identical to Sorunke, whose name when he arrived in the U.S. was Olujimi Sorunke. The MAPGIST profile said Abayomi's Twitter handle was "baby shaq38," which is now Sorunke's Instagram ID.

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