An easy win, and a nail-biter

By Chip Rowe

The top-seeded Haldane girls’ basketball team rolled into the Section 1, Class C championship game with a 71-23 victory over Solomon Schechter at the Westchester County Center on Feb. 20. During the win, senior Allison Chiera scored her 1,000th point as a high school player and put her name on the Haldane gym banner.

Games to be Streamed Online

Both sectional finals will be streamed live with play-by-play commentary at

The girls’ team (11-10) will take on the second seed, Keio Academy in Harrison, at 5 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 24, at Pace University. The teams have not met this season.

Allison Chiera celebrates her 1000th point as a high school player with her parents, sister and Coach Tyrone Searight (left). (Photo by Scott Warren)

The boys’ team, seeded second in Section 1, Class C, had a much tougher — and more dramatic — time against No. 3 seed Tuckahoe. Haldane trailed after each of the first three quarters and needed an offensive rebound and put-back by senior Liam Irwin just before the buzzer to tie the game in regulation.

The Blue Devils then dominated the overtime, winning 63-54.

Matt Champlin (5) drives to the basket with the Blue Devils down by two and less than 10 seconds remaining. He would miss the shot but Liam Irwin (right) rolled to the basket, grabbed the rebound, and tied the game. (Photo by Scott Warren)

Senior Nick DiPalo had 19 points for Haldane, while sophomore Matt Champlin finished with 18 and Irwin scored 13 and grabbed 11 rebounds. Tuckahoe’s star, Malik Moore-Crooks, who averaged 25.4 points per game, was held to 21, although he added 12 rebounds and four assists.

Getting to Pace

Both games take place at the Goldstein Fitness Center, 861 Bedford Road, in Pleasantville; use Entrance 1 or 2 into the university, off Route 117. Take Route 9 south to the NY 117 exit (Pleasantville/Sleepy Hollow). It’s about a 40-minute drive.

Parking is free and security will direct vehicles to Lot F. Admission is $8 for one or both games ($5 for students, veterans and seniors), and tickets can be purchased at the door or in advance at

Mike Wynn, the associate athletic director at Pace, recommends Craft Pizza & Beer or Sal’s Pizza & Pasta, both in Pleasantville, for a quick meal.

The boys’ team, now 15-6, will face top-seeded Alexander Hamilton from Elmsford (16-5) in the title game at 7 p.m. on Feb. 24 at Pace. They also have not played this season.

State Tournament Scoreboard

Boys’ Basketball

Beacon 70, Yonkers 54
Hendrick Hudson 64, Beacon 44
Bulldogs finish 12-10
Haldane 63, Tuckahoe 54 (OT)
Haldane vs. Hamilton, Feb. 24

Girls’ Basketball

Walter Panas 56, Beacon 33
Brianna Dembo (16 points, 10 rebounds)
Haldane 71, Schechter 23
Haldane vs. Keio Academy, Feb 24

Behind The Story

Type: News

News: Based on facts, either observed and verified directly by the reporter, or reported and verified from knowledgeable sources.

A former longtime national magazine editor, Rowe has worked at newspapers in Michigan, Idaho and South Dakota and has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in journalism from Northwestern University. Location: Philipstown. Languages: English. Area of Expertise: General.