ONEONTA – Should Oneonta High’s boys get the opportunity to avenge two losses to Norwich this season, the Yellowjackets will need to shoot well to have a chance.
If Oneonta’s regular-season finale Tuesday night was any indication, the Yellowjackets might have enough to beat the Purple Tornado.
Jordan Gutierrez and George Foti hit five three-pointers apiece, and OHS hit a season-high 13 three-pointers to beat Chenango Forks, 70-54, in a Southern Tier Athletic Conference basketball game at Drago Gymnasium.
“Overall, we’re happy for this group to be 15-2 and earn the second seed,” Yellowjackets coach Jerry Mackey said of the upcoming Section Four Class B tournament. “Nobody’s going to beat Norwich before the (sectional final) and if we’re not careful we can get beat.
“We have things we can do that will bother (Norwich) in stretches, but who knows if we’ll get the chance,” he continued.
Norwich will have the top seed for the Class B tournament. It handed OHS its lone losses of the season, the first by a 55-48 score and the second, 65-42.
If Oneonta and Norwich play again, it would come in the sectional final.
The Yellowjackets trailed, 14-12, after one quarter.
However, they opened the second quarter on a 10-2 run. By quarter’s end, Oneonta outscored the Blue Devils, 26-7, in taking a 38-21 lead into halftime. Gutierrez hit four threes in the quarter and OHS made six threes in the quarter.
“We had some spurts and Jordan hit a couple big threes, but overall our energy level wasn’t great,” Mackey said.
Gutierrez finished with a game-high 19 points. Foti had 15 points, and Albert Odero and Paul Bischoff contributed 12 and 10 points, respectively, for OHS.
Chenango Forks narrowed its deficit to 10 points heading into the fourth quarter. Jake Stone scored seven of his team-high 17 points in the quarter for the Blue Devils.
“To their credit, they made some shots and did some things with their press that we didn’t adjust well to,” Mackey said.
Any thoughts of a Forks comeback ended early in the fourth quarter.
Foti hit three three-pointers during an 11-4 run to start the quarter as the Yellowjackets’ lead ballooned to 59-42.
“If we can stay composed in the second half I think we’ll be OK (in sectionals),” said Foti, who hit five of his seven shots from three-point range.
The Yellowjackets’ next game will come in sectionals.