Resilient Red Hawks rally past QHST

By Troy Mauriello

It was a show of the kind of resiliency Construction has come to expect from its stars—and it couldn’t have come at a better time.

Queens High School of Teaching, fresh off a one-point win over division-leading Benjamin Cardozo, was trying to pull into a tie with Construction for second place.

Instead, the Red Hawks rallied from a 12-point, second-quarter deficit behind their pair of senior guards to steal a 67-65 road win in PSAL Queens AA boys’ basketball Jan. 22. Wesley Nelson scored a game-high 20 points and Marcus Saint Furcy had 17.

“These guys have been with me for three or four years,” said Construction coach Cory Semper. “It’s just playing basketball, playing through it, and being very composed.”

The Red Hawks, who trailed 36-24 midway through the second quarter, went on a 7-2 run late in the third quarter to knot up the score at 49-49 going into the final frame. Construction (12-1) then moved into the lead early in the fourth and opened up a five-point advantage with just under three minutes left in regulation.

But QHST (11-2) showed some fight of it own. Senior Rahmel Thompson carried his team with seven fourth-quarter points, including a pair of clutch free throws with 1:02 remaining, that put his team ahead 65-64.

The Tigers quickly turned the ball back over to Construction, and a breakaway layup from Nelson put the Red Hawks ahead 66-65 with 41 seconds left.

QHST’s Justin Steed missed a pair of free throws, while Construction’s Saint Furcy split a pair to put his team up 67-65 with 15 ticks left. In the final seconds, Daniel Desol-Lowry missed a three-pointer that would have put QHST ahead.

“We’re a determined team,” Saint Furcy said “We don’t have any distractions when we’re playing, and we’re just focused on getting the win.”

Construction got that win after having put itself in a difficult situation early. The Tigers scored the game’s first six points as they got to the basket with ease. QHST led 19-11 after one quarter.

QHST hit four three-pointers in the first half, while holding Construction to just seven field goals. However, it held only a seven-point, 38-31 advantage at halftime.

The Red Hawks were able to stay in the game by getting to the foul line. They made 16 of their 20 first-half free throws, while Teaching had just five foul shots overall before the break.

Jordan Wright (14 points) and Micaiah Goosby (eight points) were each instrumental for the Red Hawks. Desol-Lowry led the way for Teaching with 19 points. Junior Christopher Kelly, the team’s star, added 15 points. He missed the first meeting because of injury, but is still not fully recovered.

“I hate making excuses, but he’s not 100 percent from his injury,” said QHST coach Michael Shelton. “He wasn’t himself today, but maybe we can credit a lot of that to their defense.”

The third quarter would be filled with scoring runs by each team, with Construction going on a 9-2 spurt to tie the score at 40-40 with 3:42 left in the quarter. After a 7-2 run by Teaching made it 47-42, Construction executed another scoring run to take control of the game for good.

“We always come through adversity,” Nelson said. “Adversity is just a little thing, we preach that all the time.”

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