FORT LAUDERDALE — Senior guards Dallas Graziani and Osei Price combined for 50 points to lead Pines Charter past Stranahan, 76-57, Saturday night in the championship game at the 23rd BCAA Big 8 Championships at Fort Lauderdale High.
Graziani, the tournament MVP, poured in 31 points. The 5-foot-9 Nova Southeastern recruit canned five 3-pointers and made 10 of 11 free throws. Price finished with 19 points, including 8 of 8 from the free-throw line.
The 19-point verdict is the second-largest spread in Big 8 history topped only by Deerfield Beach’s 88-51 rout of Hallandale in 1998. Pines Charter’s largest lead Saturday was at 65-42 in the fourth quarter. It is the school’s first Big 8 title.
“We have a lot of talent on this team,” Graziani said. “Everyone works hard, everyone plays well. We practice a lot. We have a shoot-around before every game … make sure we shoot a lot of free throws, make sure our shot is feeling nice and I think that helps a lot.”
Junior guard Javen Smith and senior big Amarachi Ujagbor added 7 points apiece for the Jaguars.
Pines Charter heads into district play 21-1. The Jaguars showed they can handle the ball, score from deep, hit free throws and play defense. Stranahan falls to 19-8.
Making the all-tournament squad along with Graziani were Pines Charter’s Smith and Ujagbor; Stranahan’s Chayse Culpepper (2020) and Inady Legiste (2020); Dillard’s Jalen Haynes (2020); and Northeast’s Wesley Cardet (2021).
Senior Savier McCall led Stranahan with 13 points and Legiste had 10. Dragons starters Culpepper, Thaddeus Squire, Dave Herard and Daquion Vickers were held to a combined six field goals and 4 points apiece.
Pines Charter led Stranahan 58-42 after three quarters.
Graziani canned three 3-pointers and made 8 of 8 free throws on the way to 19 points to lead Pines Charter to a 39-27 advantage at the half.
Stranahan scored the first three points of the game but Pines Charter would go on a 13-0 run for a 13-3 lead. The Jaguars led by as many as 15 points in the first half.
If you have high school or travel basketball news you can reach Pat Lammer via e-mail at PatALammer@Gmail.com