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Downingtown West’ seniors lead win over Downingtown East

DOWNINGTOWN >> On a special Senior Night at Downingtown West, Whippets boys basketball coach Stu Ross started an all-senior lineup and gave the bulk of the playing time to his veteran unit.
It all added up to a regular season ending 61-42 win over crosstown rival Downingtown East at Wagner Gymnasium Tuesday.
Downingtown West will now turn its attention to trying to win the Ches-Mont League title, beginning Saturday at West Chester University.
The Whippets (10-2, 17-5) got a sparkling game from Dylan Blair (17 points, eight assists), while Joe Suraez chipped in with nine points and fellow senior Kelly Bell added seven points and eight rebounds in the wire-to-wire Downingtown West victory.
“Dylan Blair, Joe Suarez, Kelly Bell, Kyle Landis and Alex Ely have all given so much to this program,” Ross said. “The Class of 2023 have won a lot of games and they have built on what was done before they came to Downingtown West. They have sacrificed a lot and they have given their all for the program. I am really proud of them and it was nice to play an all senior lineup tonight against D-East.”
The Whippets jumped out to a 32-21 halftime lead as they outscored the Cougars 17-9 in the second period. Blair drained two of his three treys in the period and sophomore Donovan Fromhartz came off the bench to give the Whipepts a spark with four of his eight points coming in the second period.
With an 11 point lead, Blair went right to work to start the third period by scoring on a driving layup to make it a 34-21 game. Shanahan drained a three-ball for D-East (1-11, 7-15) to close the gap to 34-24, but that was as close as the Cougars would get to the Whippets.
Blair and Bell then worked a pretty give and go for a 36-24 Whippets lead. Landis upped the margin to 38-24 with a tough inside basket. The Cougars shot just for 4-for-12 in the third period.
When Blair beat the third quarter buzzer with a long three-ball, the Whippets lead went up to 45-32. The Whippets shot 23-for-54 from the field for the game and shot 6-for-12 in the third period.
Suarez, the Whippets’ long range marksman, came off the bench to start the fourth period and essentially put the game away with two very long three-balls to begin the final period and give the Whippets a 51-32 lead on the Cougars with 6:04 to play in the fourth period.
Downingtown East tried to stay in the hunt, but 13 Cougar turnovers derailed any thoughts D-East might have had of a classic comeback.
Both Ross and Downingtown East coach Brian Grashof cleared their benches with a little over four minutes to play in the fourth period and the Whippets holding a huge 55-38 advantage. Downingtown East shot just 4-for-13 from the field in the fourth period.
“These last four years have been the best four years of my life,” Suarez said. “I will have these guys as my friends from the rest of my life. And we are a really close group.
“Tonight, I came in and hit those shots to start the fourth period. My role on this team is to hit the three pointers and early in the year I was hot but lately I have been getting denied. But, tonight the coaches ran some great sets for me to get me open and I knocked the shots down.”
Downingtown West 61, Downingtown East 42
DOWNINGTOWN EAST (42) Kelly 3 0-2 8, Shanahan 4 0-0 10, DiLullo 2 0-0 4, Jha 4 4-6 12, Tafo 0 0-0 0, Kolinsky 0 0-0 0, Hill 2 0-0 4, Faust 1 0-0 2, Littlepage 1 0-0 2, Brown 0 0-0 0. Totals 17 4-6 42.
DOWNINGTOWN WEST (61) Blair 6 2-4 17, Ely 3 0-0 6, Landis 2 0-0 5, Lewis 1 0-0 2, Bell 2 3-4 7, Barker 1 0-0 2, Neuhas 1 1-2 3, Fromhartz 3 2-2 8, Suarez 3 0-0 9, Coupe 1 0-0 2, Zincone 0 0-0 0, Moore 0 0-0 0, Horestra 0 0-0 0. Totals 23 6-12 61.
Downingtown East   12 9 11 10-42
Downingtown West  15 17 13 16-61
3-point goals: Kelly, Shanahan 2, Blair 3, Landis, Suarez 3.

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