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Bulls Beat Clippers to be 7-8th Grade Hoops Champs

The Bulls: First row - Henry Feingold, Will Hauben, Brett Vrooman and Tyler Hermes.  Back Row - Coach Brian Rayhill, Harry Rayhill, Ben Zhao, Christian Marchesi, Dean Goll and Craig Triano.
The Bulls: First row - Henry Feingold, Will Hauben, Brett Vrooman and Tyler Hermes. Back Row - Coach Brian Rayhill, Harry Rayhill, Ben Zhao, Christian Marchesi, Dean Goll and Craig Triano.
Submitted by Brian Rayhill

The Bulls were crowned champions of the 7th/8th Grade Boys Basketball league on Saturday in a well-played and exciting championship final at Darien High School. 

The Clippers raced out to an early lead and held a nine point advantage early in the 3rd quarter only to see the Bulls roar back and take home the championship behind the excellent second half shooting of Craig Triano and the rebounding of big man Harry Rayhill.  

Triano led the Bulls with 17 points while Rayhill finished with numerous key rebounds, 6 points and a momentum changing long range 3 pointer in the 4th quarter.   The outcome was certainly in doubt with the Bulls down 18-10 at the half. 

However, clutch third quarter buckets by Dean Goll and Ben Zhao and lockdown defense by Will Hauben, Henry Feingold, Brett Vrooman, and Christian Marchesi solidified the win.   In the hard fought and intense 4th quarter, the Bulls lead was cut to 1 point before Triano answered right back with floater down the lane and foul which turned into a 3-point play.    

With the game continuing to tighten in the 4th quarter, Bulls forward Ben Zhao came up big with 3 key rebounds while guard Tyler Hermes forced 2 turnovers.   Zhao’s complete game was on display on both the offensive and defensive ends throughout the game.  

The Clippers were led in defeat by Logan McGovern’s 11 points and the rebounding prowess of Will Culliton.  Max Grant was also another standout player for the Clippers.  

The Bulls championship run would not have been possible without the strong play of the 1-2 combo of Triano and Rayhill.  Triano hit many clutch shots during the playoffs including a buzzer-beater in the semifinals against a spirited Raptors team.  

Rayhill was a fixture on the boards throughout the season and seemed to grab every important rebound.  The Bulls finished the season with an impressive 15-1 record including a 6 game playoff winning streak that culminated with the championship



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