2018-19 New York City boys basketball (through Feb. 23)
The weekly look at the New York City metro area's PSAL, CHSAA and AIS schools for the New York State Sportswriters Association is compiled by Mike Libert:
1) South Shore (23-4)- The Vikings had this past week off as they were prepar-
ing for the upcoming PSAL Class AA City Playoffs. They enter as the No. 1 seed
after winning the Brooklyn Borough Championship in come from behind fashion in
OT over Thomas Jefferson. Led by star guard Kadary Richmond '19 real work now
gets underway as South Shore who will play in the Round of 16 against the win-
ner of a game between H.S. for Construction and Boys & Girls on Thursday before
a possible quarterfinal date on Saturday with a team to be announced.
2) Cardinal Hayes (22-5)- Proving themselves without a shadow of a doubt to be
the best of the best, the Cardinals blew past a pair of foes in St. Peter's and
Iona Prep to advance to Saturday's CHSAA Archdiocese of New York title game. It
was there that Hayes asserted control early and were able to easily push past
St. Raymond 86-65. Joe Toussaint '19 once again proved why he was named CHSAA
League MVP as he scored 25 points, had 8 rebounds, and dished out 7 assists in
the title game that gives the Cardinals one of the two No. 1 seeds in the
Intersectional Playoffs which will start for them on Sunday the 3rd against
either Holy Cross or Mount St. Michael.
3) Thomas Jefferson (20-7)- Far from the result that the Orange Wave wanted when
they relinquished an 8 point lead under two minutes to play in regulation to
South Shore last week in the Brooklyn Borough Championship, losing in OT and
costing themselves the No. 1 seed in the PSAL City Playoffs. Jefferson and star
guard Jaquan Carlos '21 are now the #2 seed and will get their run to a city
title going on Thursday against the winner of an opening round game between
James Monroe and Springfield Gardens.
4) Thurgood Marshall Academy (22-4)- A truly amazing story as the Panthers
didn't come into this season with a lot of expectations but after winning the
PSAL Manhattan Borough Championships find themselves as the No. 4 seed for the
City Playoffs and a team that can fight for championship against anyone in
NYC. Getting great backcourt play from Arthur Dukes '19 and Kevin Dinkins '20,
TMA will play on Thursday against the winner of Abraham Lincoln and Campus
Magnet in the Round of 16, with a game to be determined in the quarterfinals
on Saturday with a win there.
5) Bishop Loughlin (22-3)- Finishing out the regular season with a head-
scratching loss to Holy Cross, the Lions got their revenge on the Knights in
their very next game on Thursday in the CHSAA Brooklyn/Queens Diocese Semi-
finals. Julian Champagnie '19 had 27 points to lead Loughlin to a 65-47 semi-
final victory, followed up 24 hours later on Friday with a 61-49 win over
Xaverian for the diocese title. The championship sets Bishop Loughlin up well
for a deep CHSAA Intersectional Championship run which will get going March 3
against either Iona Prep or St. Francis Prep.
6) St. Raymond (20-6)- It was a struggle for the Ravens in the CHSAA Arch-
diocese of New York semifinals on Tuesday when they played Archbishop Stepi-
nac. After jumping out to a great start St. Ray's had to hold on late as they
didn't lose the lead, but needed to hold off a massive Crusaders comeback to
take a 69-66 win with Tahron Allen '21 leading the Ravens with 17 points. The
title game vs. Cardinal Hayes on Saturday didn't go the way of St. Raymond at
all though as this time they were the ones getting off to a slow start, though
they never recovered in an 86-65 loss. The CHSAA Intersectional Tournament
will start this week and St. Ray's gets a bye into the quarterfinals on March
3, where their opponent will be Christ the King or Msgr. Scanlan.
7) Xaverian (20-7)- Without question it was a great run for the Clippers in the
CHSAA Brooklyn/Queens Diocese Tournament as the Clippers first dispatched of
Archbishop Molloy with ease in the quarterfinals on Monday before turning away
Christ the King on the road on Thursday 59-57 in a game that saw Xaverian lead
most of the way paced by the 13 points of Isaiah Amazan '19. The Clippers did
lose 61-49 to Bishop Loughlin in the title game, but Xaverian does get a bye
into the CHSAA Intersectional quarterfinals March 3 where they will face the
winner of this week's game between Archbishop Stepinac and St. Peter's.
8) Brooklyn Collegiate (17-8)- Another PSAL team that has had off for the past
week, the Lions earned the #3 seed in the PSAL City Playoffs that begin this
week and led by the likes of Glen Anderson '19 and Majesty Johnson '20 in the
backcourt it's a no doubt fact that Brooklyn Collegiate will be among the
teams fighting it out at the end for a city title. Things for the Lions will
get going on Thursday when they face off with either JFK or Wadleigh depending
on their result. A quarterfinal date with a team still to be determined will
come up on Saturday as well for one of the PSAL favorites.
9) Mount St. Michael (15-10)- Even though the Mountaineers got 28 points from
senior leader Mike Green '19 is wasn't enough for the Mount who fell in the
CHSAA Archdiocese of New York quarterfinals on Sunday, losing to Iona Prep 72-
58 less than three days after defeating the Gaels handily to close out the reg-
ular season. The loss didn't end Mount St. Michael's season though as the Moun-
taineers will now enter the CHSAA Intersectional Playoffs in the Second Round
where they will face off with Holy Cross on Wednesday in a game to be played at
St. Francis Prep.
10) Christ the King (15-10)- Getting a bye straight into the CHSAA Brooklyn/
Queens Diocese Semifinals on Thursday evening, the Royals faced off against
Xaverian at home with a title game berth on the line. Christ the King returned
big man Moussa Cisse '21 as well after missing the entire season to date because
of injury but even with his 16 points it was not good enough as the Royals fell
59-57. It's CHSAA Intersectional Playoff time now for Christ the King as they
will take on Msgr. Scanlan at St. Francis Prep in a marquee Second Round matchup
11) St. Peter's (19-7)- Coming back less than 48 hours after winning the SIHSL
Championship, the Eagles fell in the CHSAA Archdiocese of New York quarterfinals
to Cardinal Hayes 68-59 in a game that had St. Peter's be competitive from start
to finish with the presumed favorites. With that early loss the Eagles had to
play in the Opening Round of the CHSAA Intersectional Tournament on Friday even-
ing, and with Chris Clancy '19 scoring 21 points St. Peter's was able to get by
Archbishop Molloy to advance 69-59. Next up for St. Peter's will be a Second
Round game on Thursday at St. Raymond against a tough Stepinac team.
12) Curtis (20-7)- Losing in the SIHSL Championship Game in a heartbreaker the
week before to St. Peter's, the Warriors were awarded the #5 seed in the PSAL
City Playoffs after what was a strong and impressive regular season. Darnell
Askew '19 has become a go to force inside for Curtis and he and the trio of solid
Warriors guards will look to make big noise in the playoffs which begins for Cur-
tis this coming Thursday with a matchup in the Round of 16 against either Wings
Academy or Eagle Academy II, and a possible quarterfinal game to follow that on
Saturday with a win.
13) JFK (16-11)- It may have come out of nowhere but the Knights were able to run
through all Bronx competitors to claim the PSAL Bronx Borough Championship last
week to put JFK into the Top 15 for the first time in recent memory. Brothers
Emmanuel Takyi '19 and Edwin Takyi '19 have led the late season charge for the
Knights who are still a lower seed in the PSAL City Playoffs as the #14 seed, but
they are as dangerous as anyone with a game at home on Wednesday in the Opening
Round against Wadleigh, followed by a possible Round of 16 matchup on Friday with
Brooklyn Collegiate if they can get the first win.
14) John Bowne (19-7)- Taking part in the LuHi Invitational meant a tall task
for the PSAL Queens Borough Champion as they had to face off against one of
the best in the country in Long Island Lutheran in Friday's opening round. It
didn't go well in what was a 71-39 defeat, but credit to the likes of Tyshawn
Trail '21 and the rest of the Wildcats as they came back in the third-place
game and defeated Martin Luther King Jr. 51-37. It's back to the task at hand
and the PSAL City Playoffs starting on Friday when the Wildcats host McKee/
Staten Island Tech in an 8 vs. 9 game, the winner going on to play in Satur-
day's quarterfinals against more than likely South Shore.
15) Msgr. Scanlan (11-14)- While the Crusaders finished the regular season with
an impressive win over St. Raymond it was back to the ups and downs for Scanlan
as they fell in the quarterfinals of the CHSAA Archdiocese of New York Tournament
to Archbishop Stepinac 72-60 in a game that junior guard Joe Munden '20 scored a
team-high 22 points in the loss. The defeat now has the Crusaders readying for the
CHSAA Intersectional Playoffs which for them will start on Wednesday night at St.
Francis Prep with a big meeting set up against an always powerful Christ the King.
1) Nazareth (19-6)- Going to the top of Class A for the second time this season
are the Kingsmen who have dominated the A Division in the CHSAA this season,
with all of their losses minus one when shorthanded coming against non-league
competition. Khalil Brantley '21 has really begun to step his game up to
another level as proven in Saturday's CHSAA Class A Quarterfinals against Msgr.
McClancy as he had 20 points in a 68-43 victory. Tuesday will see Nazareth take
on Fordham Prep in the semifinals with the Class A Championship scheduled for
Friday night at Fordham University.
2) Brooklyn Law and Tech (21-4)- If there is a heavier favorite in any league
in New York City than the Jets we would like to see them as Law and Tech are
the No. 1 seed in the PSAL City Playoffs. Led by one of the PSAL's best all-
around talents this season in Davonta Cook '19, Brooklyn Law and Tech will play
in the second round on Thursday after an opening round bye where it will be
either Grand Street Campus or Martin Luther King Jr awaiting the Jets who have
a path that should allow them to get deep with relative ease.
3) Fordham Prep (20-5)- As per usual the Rams were able to control the paint and
really dominate on the inside as Matt Filipowski '21 had 14 points and 13 re-
bounds in Fordham Prep's CHSAA Class A Quarterfinal on Saturday afternoon to
help the Rams down their rivals in Xavier 64-47. The win puts Fordham Prep in a
great position as they now move onto Tuesday's semifinal round where they will
get our No. 1 Nazareth team for the right to move onto Friday's title game and
play for the CHSAA Championship.
4) Msgr. Farrell (20-5)- While on paper it looked as if Farrell were major
favorites against St. Edmund Prep in Saturday's CHSAA Class A Quarterfinals it
was as difficult a challenge as they faced all year as the Lions were in danger
of being eliminated before a late basket sent the game into OT. Chris Edwards
'19 then hit the game winner just before the final buzzer in the extra session
to help Msgr. Farrell to a 59-57 win that pushes them into the semifinals on
Tuesday where they will again take on an upset winner in the previous round in
LaSalle with the winner there to play for the title.
5) Frederick Douglass Academy (19-6)- The only Class A team to make it to a
Borough Championship, the Lions made it to the Manhattan title game where they
would fall to one of the best in Class AA this season in Thurgood Marshall Acad-
emy, though having only trailed by 5 at the half before faltering late it does
bode well for FDA who landed the #6 overall seed in the PSAL Playoffs. To open
up their playoff run it will be a matchup on Friday with either Evander Childs
or Brooklyn Tech with the winner going to the Round of 16.
6) Lehman (23-3)- With one of the better defensive teams in the PSAL this sea-
son, Lehman was able to make some noise in the Bronx Borough Playoffs which has
to give them confidence heading into the PSAL City Tournament where the Lions
were given the No. 4 seed. Mekhi Purser '20 has been the catalyst for every-
thing Lehman has done this season but it will be a true team effort that will
allow the Lions to be a team that can compete for a city title this season.
Getting things going this week will be either Metropolitan or John Jay in a
Second Round game to be played on Friday evening.
7) New Dorp (16-5)- Led by one of the better sophomores in New York City that
not enough people know about in David Shkolniy '21, the Cougars are the No. 5
seed in the PSAL City Playoffs after one of their best regular seasons in the
past decade. What makes New Dorp a team that can compete with anyone is the
fact that they are battle tested with wins over a pair of Class AA schools this
season in Curtis and McKee/ Staten Island Tech, something that will help them
when they open the playoffs on Thursday against either KIPP NYC College Prep or
8) Beacon (22-2)- After getting the #2 seed in the PSAL City Playoffs a year
ago it's the No. 3 seed for the Blue Demons who had one of the best regular-
season records of any PSAL team. Beacon has an array of guards who can all
hurt defenses from behind the arc which makes them a team very tough to defend,
and a challenge to try and contain on any level. They will look to prove them-
selves this postseason after a struggling upset a year ago as it will be a
Thursday playoff opener against either Thomas Edison or Susan Wagner to be play-
ed at home.
9) Benjamin Banneker (20-4)- Garnering the #2 seed in the PSAL City Playoffs,
Banneker have shown that outside of Brooklyn Law and Tech they are as good as
anyone in NYC, and without a doubt the borough Brooklyn. Gabriel Holley '21 is
a strong up and coming floor general who has done a great job at controlling
the pace of play and the tempo all season long for the Warriors who will be in
contention for a major playoff run when they get going on Friday as it will be
either Long Island City or Bayard Rustin who get things going this postseason
10) LaSalle Academy (16-10)- A team that was never really on our radar for much
of the season, the Cardinals shocked the CHSAA A Division on Saturday when they
upended the No. 1 seed in All Hallows 58-50, leading the entire way and domin-
ating from start to finish. Josiah Chandler '19 came up with one of his biggest
game of the season in LaSalle's biggest game of the year as they now advance to
Tuesday's semifinals where Msgr. Farrell will be waiting for them, and a win
there puts the Cardinals in position to do something no one thought possible
even a week ago, play for the championship.
1) Uncommon Charter (20-2)- The top dogs in Class B this season it truly has
been a season to remember so far for the Sabers as they hold wins over the
likes of Archbishop Molloy, a feather in the cap for any program on this level
to down a perennial Class AA power from the CHSAA, Ahzariah Douglas '20 has
been the key cog as of late for Uncommon Charter will who start their playoff
journey on Thursday when as the No. 1 seed they will host the winner of a game
between Robert Goddard or Life Sciences Secondary.
2) South Bronx Prep (23-3)- Maybe the team with the most potent offense in
Class B this season, the Cougars can hurt you with superstar senior Jordan
Agyemang '19 just as much as it can be Steven Turner '21 who goes off for
triple-doubles at an impressive rate in just his sophomore year. Averaging
nearly 80 points a game this season, South Bronx Prep are no question one of
the favorites in the PSAL and will start their postseason with a game on
Thursday against either Cambria Heights Academy or Baruch College Campus.
3) Fannie Lou Hamer (21-4)- One of the more disciplined and well coached teams
that you will find, Fannie Lou are the defending PSAL and NYS Federation Class
B winners and will look to keep their championship form going with another deep
playoff run as the #4 seed in the upcoming PSAL Playoffs. Anthony Rose '20 has
been the one to really rise up and take his game to the next level this season
for the Panthers who will draw either BCAM or East Side Community on Friday de-
pending on the winner of those teams matchup earlier in the week.
4) Achievement First (21-4)- There isn't much of a history of success for
Achievement First but that is all changing this season as they received their
highest playoff seed ever earning the #3 seed in the PSAL City Playoffs. Jalen
Fenton '19 has been a standout all season long for Achievement, and it will be
his ability to keep his game going strong in the postseason that will deter-
mine their success. Coming up to begin their playoff run, Achievement First
will take on Bronx United or H.S. for Math, Science, and Engineering on Fri-
day in a Second Round playoff matchup.
5) Summit Academy (18-2)- Having only lost a pair of games this season the
future certainly looks bright for Summit as even with all the success they
have had this season there are only 3 seniors on the team meaning much of the
Eagles core will be returning for another year or even two years to come. Jor-
dan Council '20 has been a fantastic leader for the team in the backcourt as
its his play along with freshman Phil Grant '22 who will be leading the No. 5
seed as Summit Academy will start the playoffs on Friday against either South
Bronx or Medgar Evers.
6) Bronx School for Law, Government, and Justice (18-2)- When you have someone
in the paint like Frantz Jean-Pierre '19 it makes things easier for a team
like the Jaguars as they take advantage of his size and strength around the
rim to control the game and wear their opponents down. For a second straight
season Law, Government, and Justice has been among the very best in Class B,
though this time they hop to make a deeper playoff run as the playoffs for
them get started on Friday when they take on Newcomers or Morrisania depending
on the result of their matchup on Wednesday.
7) Dalton (21-4)- For the second time in less than a week Dalton played River-
dale, but unlike their win to finish out the regular season it was a NYSAIS
Class B Quarterfinal game the second time around. It was the same result
though as the Tigers were able to get a 71-60 home win. The semifinal though
was a tougher challenge as Dalton went on the road on Friday to face off
against The Knox School. As the underdogs it was the Tigers who came out and
took a quick lead, and with Mark Engel '20 scoring 28 points it was Dalton
surprising many with a 74-68 win to advance to Sunday's NYSAIS title game
where it will be Lawrence Woodmere Academy in their way of a championship.
8) Regis (18-5)- With star junior guard Joe Manfredi '20 being named CHSAA
Class B Player of the Year it would be fair to say that the Raiders are the
favorites to claim the league crown this season. They won the regular season
title to earn the No. 1 seed in the Class B playoffs which meant they got a
bye straight into the semifinals which will take place this Monday where
Regis will go up against Cristo Rey at St. Raymond H.S. with the winner mov-
ing onto Friday's title game and a coveted berth into the NYS Federation
Tournament later on in March to end the basketball season.
9) Epic H.S. South (20-4)- In only their second season as a program, and first
in Class B after spending a year ago as a Developmental team, Epic South has
really burst onto the scene with a big bang as Robert Thompson '19 has been a
double-double machine who has led his team to the #9 seed in this season's
PSAL Class B Playoffs. Even though they may be a young and new program there
are still a good amount of expectations for this year's group as they will
play their first ever playoff game against H.S. of American Studies or Juan
Morel Campos on Thursday in front of their home fans and students.
10) Poly Prep (17-7)- A great season came to an end for the Blue Devils as
they were able to start their NYSAIS Class B Playoffs with a 71-61 win on the
road against The Dwight School as Max Ragusa '22 continued to come of age at
the floor general position to pace Poly Prep to the win. That win put the
Blue Devils into the semifinals on Friday where they went to Lawrence Wood-
mere Academy, an opponent that proved to be too much in a 71-37 loss to end
Poly Prep's year. With a young team due back in a years time though expect
the Blue Devils to be among the favorites in the Ivy League again come next