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Saturday / July 13.
  • Delarosa Leads Christ the King Into Rematch With Loughlin; Talks College Visits & Timetable

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    DelarosaBy CHRIS BARCA

    Special to ZAGSBLOG

    NEW YORK — Coming into the final minute of Thursday’s CHSAA Intersectional semifinal game against Cardinal Hayes at Fordham University, Christ the King star senior Adonis Delarosa had only managed a meager nine points, while his Royals trailed by two points.

    With a fifth appearance in the city final in the last six years on the line, Delarosa made sure that it would be Christ the King battling rival Bishop Loughlin for the city crown on Sunday.

    “I’m a senior, so I had to make the game winning play,” Delarosa said after ensuring CTK’s dramatic 49-47 victory. “So I did that.”

    The senior center didn’t make just one title berth-clinching play, his intense play in the paint in crunch time on both ends of the floor were the difference.

    With 32 seconds left, Hayes big man Nathan Ekwu extended his elbow while attempting to back Delarosa down. When the senior threw his head back in an apparent exaggeration of the contact between the two, Ekwu was called for the offensive foul, giving the Royals a chance to tie or win the game in the waning seconds.

    “He extended his arm and I did a little acting job there,” he said. “I had to do what I had to do to get the W.”

    In a scene right out of a Hollywood movie, Delarosa, who scored 12 points and snared nine rebounds, called for the ball on offense, posting up Hayes’ Akintoye Ojo, drawing a foul on a hook shot that found the bottom of the bucket to tie the ballgame at 47 with 14 seconds left.

    The senior would drain the free throw, and after a Hayes missed three and a Travis Atson free throw, Christ the King walked away with the win and a rematch with Loughlin and Seton Hall-bound Khadeen Carrington on Sunday at 3 p.m. at Fordham.

    Carrington scored a career-high 42 points in Loughlin’s 90-71 drubbing of the Royals in the CHSAA Brooklyn/Queens title game on Feb. 21., but Delarosa wouldn’t want to play anyone else with the city championship on the line.

    “I’m very glad it’s Loughlin,” he said. “We’re going to get them.”

    While the senior may be focused on Sunday, Royals coach Joe Arbitello announced on Twitter this week that Delarosa will make his college decision on April 18.

    St. John’s head coach Steve Lavin and assistant coach Tony Chiles were in attendance on Thursday. St. John’s has no commits for the Class of 2014 yet, but needs to add at least one big man with Orlando Sanchez and God’sgift Achiuwa on the way out.

    Delarosa said he didn’t even notice Lavin in the crowd and that he will be making visits to prospective schools in a few weeks.

    “In mid-March, I will be making official visits but I haven’t narrowed anything down yet,” he said. “I don’t have a top five at this point.”

    Arbitello said that St. John’s, Fordham, Rutgers, Hofstra and South Carolina are the schools that have expressed the most interest in Delarosa, and while the senior says he has no favorites, he isn’t sure if he will play his college ball in the Tri-State area.

    “I’m open to everybody,” Delarosa said. “I don’t know if I’m going to be staying in New York for college.”

    “I never get into that stuff,” Arbitello added, when asked if he knew where Delarosa was leaning. “We’ll talk about it when the season’s over.”

    Rawle Alkins added 18 points for Christ the King, including 11 points in the second half, leading Delarosa to call him “the best wing in New York.” Andre Walker scored 11 points before fouling out halfway through the fourth quarter.

    In the undercard to the Royals’ matchup with Hayes, Loughlin topped St. Peter’s 89-77 behind a 30-point effort by Rutgers-bound guard Mike Williams and Carrington’s 22 point game. Javian Delacruz and Issak Bodon dropped 16 and 11 points respectively.

    Arbitello wasn’t as enthusiastic as Delarosa when asked if he was happy about Sunday’s championship game, instead he said he had one simple request for his team, a concentrated effort.

    “That’s like saying are you happy if you jumped off a bridge. We have to play Khadeen Carrington and Mike Williams,” he said. “I’m happy it’s going to be a good, competitive game. Now we just have to play as hard as we played tonight.”

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.

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