2007-02-02 / Sports

Far Rockaway Roar Past Richmond Hill For First Win

By Elio Velez

Far Rockaway basketball player Ednut Egberongbe. Photo By Peter Borriello.Far Rockaway basketball player Ednut Egberongbe. Photo By Peter Borriello. Strike up the marching band and play the victory song because the Far Rockaway Seahorses are in the win column.

Head men's basketball coach Chris Frazier can smile and breathe a sigh of relief as his winless Seahorses broke that strong with an inspiring 72-71 overtime victory against the Richmond Hill Lions last Wednesday afternoon.

Due to the regents' week, there wasn't a large gathering of students who watched the Seahorses improve their record to 1-13. Those who did saw Ednut Egbergone score 28 points in his third game off a broken left wrist and Dashawn Williamson scored 17 points and grabbed 15 rebounds.

"I am so proud of the kids of the way they kept fighting and that they can get that proverbial monkey off their back," Frazier said

The Seahorses have been an inexperienced group on the floor as they've tried to form a cohesive unit. Frazier didn't realize it was going to take this long to get a victory but he did see signs of improvement in back to back close losses to Hillcrest and Grover Cleveland.

In that loss to Cleveland on January 13, he reacquired the services of Egberongbe as the senior had his wrist broken during a tackle in the final game of the varsity football season.

Egberonge was one of the few players on the team with prior basketball experience. He made up for the absence of leading scorer Malcolm Keller at the right time against the Lions.

It was a see-saw battle throughout but Richmond Hill, led by 27 points from Ruhal Tuhan, almost secured a two point win in the fourth quarter with time running out. The Seahorses final chance almost came for naught. Davonne Gittens drove down the middle of the lane and missed on the layup but Egberongbe, trailing on the play, tapped in the missed basket to send the game into overtime.

"He (Ednut) was huge because he's been waiting so long for something like this," Frazier said about his senior small forward. "He was focused and everywhere for us today."

Frazier could not have been any happier with his team's effort, especially since he credits them for battling when the losses piled up.

The Seahorses overcame key lossess throughout the game. Point guard Brandon Rowe fouled out and center Stafford Nichols sprained his right ankle in the overtime.

They held on to the victory and though Frazier would love to keep celebrating, he has to put the victory aside and prepare for Forest Hills today. But he'll remember a Wednesday afternoon when a good result made him proud to be in the coaching profession.

"These players came to practice every day and they didn't give up. This is a group that I will never forget in the over 20 years that I've been coaching," Frazier, who has assisted at Bishop Loughlin and Lawrence High School said.

"The guys came through."

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