Harley Allendale Columbia tops Dundee 59-51 to claim Class C2 title

Gary Pinneo
Dundee’s #31 Ryan Ballard, shoots over HAC’s #31 Nick Myers..

Last March, the underdog Dundee Scots upended the No. 1 seeded Harley Allendale Columbia Wolves to win the Section V Class C championship.  One year later, the Scots were in position to repeat this basketball feat. 

But Friday evening in Rochester's War Memorial Arena, the Brighton-based Wolves had another idea. H.A.C. had defeated Dundee twice earlier this season in Finger Lakes West action. They were determined to make this a three game sweep. The Wolves controlled this contest from the opening tip-off and held off a hectic Dundee comeback attempt to capture a 59-51 victory and the Section V Class C2 title.

After H.A.C. jumped out to a 13-9 first quarter lead, the two teams traded baskets in the second quarter. The Wolves held a 27-23 advantage at the half. The Scots were hampered by some early game foul troubles, especially two quick fouls called on their senior leader Justin Schenck. 

Dundee made a couple of second half mini-runs to try to get back into this game but never quite caught up.  Some key mistakes and turnovers by Dundee late in the game derailed any Scotsmen hopes of a come from behind win in this game. 

Dundee's regular season losses to H.A.C. were the results of some hot shooting by the Wolve's talented senior Jon Benjamin. He scored 20 and 26 points in those two H.A.C. wins. In Friday's title game, Benjamin was once again the Scotsmen's nemesis. He scored 29 points in this contest and for all intents and purposes was unstoppable. H.A.C. also shot a blistering 54% from behind the three point arc. Adding up all of these factors, Dundee could not overcome and contain the determined Wolves. The 2008/9 Class C title belonged to H.A.C.

Ryan Ballard led the Scots in scoring with 14 points. 

Justin Schenck and Blaine Moore both tallied 9 points. Dylan Hastings added 8 points and hauled down 10 rebounds. 

Dundee's Justin Schenck and Ryan Ballard were named to the All-Tournament team. Joe Tortolon won the sportsmanship award. 

The Scotsmen cagers ended their 2008-2009 season with a very respectable 15-9 record. The Dundee sports community has enjoyed that electric feeling of success that comes from winning sectional championships. The Scots won the basketball sectional title last March and also won the Section V Class C football crown this past fall. 

This feeling created by winning forges a bond in the community and brings people together. Another title would have been special, but was not meant to be. 

It is however important to appreciate these special moments at the time they happen, because you never know when or if they will come your way again.

This thought was nicely summed up by Dundee senior Blaine Moore at the conclusion of Friday's game.  "To get to the Sectional finals twice and play in this building is a thrill.  Every game is a thrill and it is fun just to be a part of it."  Very well stated young, Mr. Moore. You'll understand this even more as the years pass by.  Believe me.

Joe Tortolon of the Scots receives the Premier Sport sportsmanship award.