Jose Perez made scoring look so effortless as his Wings team had Construction working every point.
“When I don’t force the stuff and let the game come to me I’m more productive,” Perez said.
The junior wing scored a game-high 20 point to lead No. 3-seeded Wings comfortably past the No. 6 Red Hawks 62-48 in the PSAL Class AA boys’ basketball quarterfinals at Baruch College on Feb. 28. Perez hit spot up jumpers, connected while falling away in the post and attacked the hoop in transition.
“When he stays within himself and he allows us to get him shots and not try to create to0 much on his own, those type of things happen,” Wing coach Billy Turnage said.
Perez allowed the defending city champion Wings to grind out a win on the other end. They led Construction 26-21 half despite missing a ton of foul shots and methodically shut their opponent down with a zone defense in the third quarter. Wings’ discipline and communication allowed it to force jump shots, create turnovers and outscore the Red Hawks 16-8 in the frame to take a 42-29 lead into the fourth. Construction scored a combined 16 points in the second and third quarters.
“That’s a good defensive effort,” Perez said. “We sat down and played very good defense.”
He came alive with Construction struggling to put the ball in the basket. After the Red Hawks pulled with in 35-24 on a try by Micaih Goosby (22 points) Perez scored six of the next seven Wings points to put the advantage back to 42-25 with 1:52 to go in the third quarter. Boubacar Kamissoko added 12 points and Kevin Saylor chipped in seven for Wings. Wesley Nelson added 16 for the Red Hawks.
Construction, got as close as 49-39 at the 4:57 mark of the fourth quarter, but another Wings surge was enough to carry it to its seventh semifinal and rematch of last year’s clash with Brooklyn-power Thomas Jefferson at St. John’s University on March 5.
It comes after losing three key seniors in Jessie Govan, Desure Buie and Randy Corporan, but this group is far from satisfied.
“These guys have done a tremendous job to his point with what we lost last year,” Turnage said. “No one expected us to be anywhere near where we are right now, but it is not done…We want to win the city.”