WATERLOO — Senior all-star games are meant for one last hoorah as they cap off the high school campaign. The boys Wayne-Finger Lakes exceptional senior game on Tuesday night was an offensive clinic with the red team claiming a barn burner 103-101 victory.
Waterloo’s Derek Slywka hit the game winning shot with 19 seconds remaining to seal the deal, part of his game high 29 point performance. The shot resembled one of his all time favorite players, Kobe Bryant.
“I wear number 24 because I’m a Kobe fan,” Slywka said, “and that was a Mamba shot, the little back to the basket. I’m not missing that, you got to come in clutch there.
“I think this is a great way to end my career as a high schooler. Especially to come back in my own gym and have a better game than what we had against Geneva. It was fun, I came out hoping to get some dunks and it turned out to be a really fun and good game.”
Between Slywka and Geneva’s Reid Patchett it turned out to be a dunk fest. Patchett would tie Newark’s Mason VanDeMortal with a team blue high 15 points.
“It was a fun night,” Patchett said. “It was fun playing with some of the kids we played against all season. We were just having fun and weren’t too worried about the score at the end of the day. It was just getting out and playing some basketball one last time.”
Dundee’s Austin Gibson hit a deep buzzer beater 3-pointer to end the half, which cut the blue team’s deficit to 60-43. Lyons’ Justice Smith had one more solid outing as he scored 15 points for team red, while Mynderse Academy’s Darren Miller chipped in with the dunking show finishing with 14 points.
At halftime, athletes and coaches were recognized for their hard work and dedication all season long. Patchett, VanDeMortel, Slywka, Miller and Newark’s Jayden Peters were named to the Finger Lakes East All-Star team.
Marcus Whitman’s Jon Donovan was named to the Finger Lakes West All-Star team. His coach, Greg O’Connor, was awarded the Finger Lakes West Coach of the Year.
Lyons’ Aaron Romero garnered Wayne County All-Star accolades, while Smith earned Player of the Year. Dean Schott II took home Coach of the Year honors for the Lions.
With graduation only three months away some seniors offered some insight on their academic and playing futures.
“I’m thinking between Hobart and FLCC,” Slywka added. “I’m just waiting back on some financial stuff from Hobart, and I’ll make the decision after that. If I go to Hobart I’ll probably end up playing football, but FLCC I’ll play basketball.”
“I don’t know where I’m going yet,” Patchett added. “I’m planning on playing basketball when I get there.”