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Meet the athletes who excelled during the 2011-12 boys basketball season. The awards were selected by MSG Varsity's staff of reporters and editor.
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MSG Varsity: Westchester/Hudson Valley boys basketball awards
PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Sky Williams, Tuckahoe
Section 1’s leading scorer. Tuckahoe’s all-time leading scorer. MVP of the Section 1 tournament. MVP of the state tournament. Best player on an undefeated, state championship team and arguably the best squad in school history.
What more could Sky Williams do?
The senior guard accomplished every goal he and the Tigers set out for this season. They ripped through their regular season schedule, beating several Class AA and A teams along the way. They captured the school’s first state title since 1981 and finished a perfect 25-0.
Williams was the centerpiece of it all. He led Section 1 with 27.8 points per game. He had 20 points or more in every postseason game, highlighted by a 37-point effort in the state title game. He scored 30 or more in a game 10 times and went for over 40 twice.
Williams has not yet decided on college but it weighing options with several Division I and II schools. He’ll get more opportunity to prove himself in the coming weeks. He was selected for the Charm City Classic in Baltimore on April 1 and was selected for the U.S. Elite Team that will compete in Milan, Italy on April 4-10.
COACH OF THE YEAR
George Gaine, Tappan Zee
The coach of the year capped a remarkable season by engineering an upset for the ages.
Gaine had already locked up this year’s honor before his team stepped on the floor in the Class A state semifinal with Jamesville-DeWitt. The Dutchmen went undefeated despite a brutal Rockland County schedule and captured their second Gold Ball in three seasons. They topped defending champion Byram Hills in the semifinals and power Poughkeepsie in the title game, both of which were decided late.
Tappan Zee won its first ever state tournament game, blowing past a favored Seton Catholic squad, and then came back in the second half to defeat Marlboro in regional final, securing their first ever trip to Glens Falls.
That’s where the Dutchmen secured their legacy. Facing a four-time defending state champion in Jamesville-DeWitt — which featured 6-foot-10 McDonald’s All-American Dajuan Coleman (Syracuse) and 6-9 forward Tyler Cavanaugh (Wake Forest) — Tappan Zee used exceptional team defense and hot 3-point shooting from Pat Peterson to pull off the upset. TZ didn’t have a player over 6-5 yet controlled the paint and earned a spot in the state final, where it lost to Harborfields.
Gaine did it with an inspiring level of passion and shrewd game-planning, which was on full display against Jamesville-DeWitt.
All-Westchester/Hudson Valley: First team
Isaiah Cousins, Sr. Mount Vernon: Mr. Basketball in Section 1 recently made a verbal commitment to play for Oklahoma. The senior flourished in his role taking over as the point guard, guiding the Knights to their second straight state title. Cousins averaged just over 16 points per game and was the MVP of the Section 1 tournament.
Randy Stephens, Sr. Mount Vernon: The senior wing garnered a reputation for being a big-game player. After averaging under 10 points a game in the regular season — mostly because of lopsided Mount Vernon wins — Stephens elevated his play in the postseason as the Knights won their seventh straight Section 1 title. He had 19 points in the title game, and had 19 in the state semifinal. The smooth stat-stuffing left-hander is a high Division I recruit.
Pat Peterson, Sr., Tappan Zee: A very solid regular season was followed by a postseason that goes down as one of the best in Section 1 history. Peterson, who averaged 13.8 points per game for the balanced 24-1 Dutchmen, averaged 21.3 in the state tournament, highlighted by his jaw-dropping 31 point performance against Jamesville-DeWitt. He had seven 3-pointers and scored 28 in the second half, which he followed up with 20 points in the state final.
Tyler Sayre, Sr. Albertus Magnus: Sayre leaves Albertus Magnus as the most accomplished player in school history. He guided the program to back-to-back Section 1 championships, became the school’s all-time leading scorer and established himself as one of the dynamic players in the region. He averaged 19.2 points and 11 rebounds per game.
Mike McCahey, Sr., Clarkstown South: One of the best players in school history led the program on its deepest run through the postseason. The Vikings made their first ever appearance at the County Center, giving eventual state champion Mount Vernon one of their biggest challenges. McCahey, who’ll play at St. Anselm, had 25 points in that game and averaged 28 points in South’s final seven contests. McCahey finished just six points shy of the school record.
Brendan Hynes, Jr., Mahopac
Josh James, Jr., Stepinac
Billy O’Shea, Sr., Tappan Zee
Jarrel Marshall, Sr., Mount Vernon
Will Trawick, Sr. Fox Lane
Felix Abongo, Sr., Iona Prep
Joe Clarke, Jr., New Rochelle
Eric Paschall, Soph., Dobbs Ferry
Thiago Randazzo, Sr., Kennedy
Mike Tamburri, Sr., Marlboro
About the MSG Varsity All-Stars: The honorees were selected among public and private schools within the MSG Varsity coverage region, which includes Westchester, Rockland, Putnam, Dutchess and parts of Orange County.
Email Kevin Devaney Jr. at email@example.com