Simpson, Lobley, Pilson key Portledge
In the second of back-to-back episodes of "The Simpsons," it was brother Terence's turn to play a starring role.
After Tamara Simpson led the Portledge girls to the IPPSAL title, Terence Simpson did the same, scoring 14 of his game-high 27 points in the fourth quarter as the Portledge boys beat Martin DePorres, 62-45, Thursday night for their second IPPSAL title in three years.
"I love my sister. She supports me and she told me to play my game," Terence Simpson said.
He did just that, taking over the contest at several key points with artful zigzag drives. "I'm a slasher first; shooter second," said Simpson, a sophomore who transferred to Portledge from Lutheran.
He converted a three-point play off an offensive rebound early in the fourth quarter and followed that by slicing through the lane for a layup that made it 44-37.
Simpson broke the game open by hitting five straight free throws plus a long trey as Portledge pulled away late. "I had the confidence I could get to the basket," Simpson said.
Senior Nick Lobley displayed confidence in his long-range shot, hitting two critical three-pointers in the second quarter when the Panthers erased a 15-11 deficit with a 10-0 run.
The scoring streak delighted a noisy crowd which included Tamara Simpson and her teammates, seated on the floor in the front row wearing white tees and white hats turned backward. Senior Zach Pilson added 13 points, 11 in the second half.
"It's my fourth year at the school and I guess I'm the emotional one," said Lobley, who finished with 15 points. "I love hitting those big threes and getting the crowd fired up. I think the guys feed off that."
Up next for Portledge is the NYSAIS tournament in which it will either play an outbracket game on Feb. 29 or a first-round game on March 1.