Highlanders boys’ basketball earn win before tourney exit

West Milford. The boys' basketball team earned a needed second win of the season before exiting the Passaic County Tournament Jan. 30. The team put together a 77-73 victory over Pompton Lakes before exiting the tournament with a loss to Wayne Hills.

12 Feb 2020 | 02:12

The West Milford High School boys’ basketball team got its second win of the season during the Passaic County Tournament on Jan. 30.

The home victory over Pompton Lakes came in the Play-in Round of the tournament. The final score was 77-73.

Senior Kevin DeRaffele had a monster game, leading the Highlanders in scoring with 34 points to go along with his 13 rebounds, five assists, and two blocks.

Fellow senior Danny Woodcock added 16 points and five rebounds, while junior Luke Milko scored 16 points of his own in addition to grabbing eight rebounds.

Justin Spagnuolo also chipped in with eight points and six rebounds in the win, while sophomore Dylan Connors had six rebounds, four steals, three assists, and a block.

Following the victory, the 17th-seeded West Milford moved onto the preliminary round of the tournament to face the ninth-seeded Wayne Hills.

The Highlanders were neck and neck with the Patriots through the first half, with the score tied at 29 at the break.

It was a different story in the second half, however, as Wayne Hills outscored West Milford 13-2 in the third quarter to take a commanding lead into the fourth.

The Highlanders kept it close in the final period, but it wasn’t enough as the Patriots were able to hold on for the 60-44 win.

DeRaffele led the way in the losing effort once again with 12 points, eight rebounds, four assists, and two blocks.

Spagnuolo added eight points of his own to go along with his 10 rebounds, while Connors also grabbed ten rebounds in the game.

Woodcock scored another nine points in addition to his two blocks, and sophomore Chris Albar had eight points, three assists, and two steals.

West Milford followed its early tournament exit with a couple more losses, the first to Fair Lawn on Feb. 4 and the next to Clifton on Feb. 6.

DeRaffele led the team in scoring in both games yet again, getting 21 points in each contest.

Albar also scored 13 points against Fair Lawn and 12 against Clifton, while Andy Jerez had 18 points and five rebounds in the Clifton game.

The Highlanders (2-16) were set to get a chance to bounce back on Tuesday, when the team was scheduled to face Lakeland at home.