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Sunday, Feb. 14, 2016: Loughlin girls 'derail' Christ the King

   Leading off today: Chalk up Bishop Loughlin girls basketball coach Chez Williams' team-building exercise as a success.

   Williams made the decision to have his Lions travel from Fort Greene to Middle Village via public transportation rather than school bus Saturday to forge a bit more team unity.

   "For a game like this we don't need two people coming in together," Williams told MSG Varsity. "We need everyone coming in as a team. I told them your taking the train and they look at me like I'm crazy. Being together like that helps."

   Apparently so. Loughlin rode four double-figure scoring performances to a 69-58 win at Christ the King. Ellease Billings-Harrison paced the winners with 16 points, and Mimi Reid and Lynette Taitt added 15.

   Loughlin, ranked 16th in Class AA by the New York State Sportswriters Association, improved to 18-6. Eighth-ranked Christ the King is 16-8.

   "It means a lot. Out of my three years playing on the varsity, we was always the underdogs coming into their gym," Billings-Harrison said. "Just beating them today was wonderful. It just sets the tone going into the playoffs."

   Christ the King will be top-seeded when it starts defense of its diocesan championship. The Royals were playing their second ranked foe in 24 hours, having knocked off No. 3 Long Island Lutheran 69-55 on Friday.

   "A tale of two cities," Christ the King coach Bob Mackey said. "Its definitely a different performance today. They've got to learn a lesson from this. They just can't show up."

   Milestone win: McQuaid hockey coach Al Vyverberg recorded his 400th career win when the Knights edged Irondequoit 3-1 on Saturday.

   Peter Campbell evened the score at 1-1 for McQuaid in the third period and Brennan Brown fired home the go-ahead goal.

   Getting his shot: The Times Herald-Record served up a nice story about Goshen boys basketball statistician Nick Barnes, who'll get a shot at playing in Wednesday's senior night contest.

   Goshen will tap the opening jump ball against James I. O'Neill to Barnes, who has autism. Barnes will score a lay-up with O'Neill coach Debbie Crowe's blessing.

   "All of us have a tough time containing our excitement," Goshen coach Mike Tangney said. "Nick's excitement just shows in every step that he takes."

   Barnes started his statistical work by tracking shots on paper but made the digital conversion when he received an iPad as a freshman. Using GameChanger software, he can break down how opposing players are shooting from various areas of the court.

   Tangney and assistant coach John Dombrowski study Barnes' shooting charts and stats at halftime.

   "I can look at the (stat) book and see somebody has 16 points at the half, but I can't see if they took 10 or 25 shots," Tangney said. "So Nick's stats give me the ability to a lot of times tweak my game plan to fit what I need to do mid-game."

   More from Saturday: Earlier today we posted a recap of some of the wrestling action across the state as numerous sections completed part or all of their state-meet qualifying.

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