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Scholastic Roundup: A basketball tribute to Dr. King

January 21, 2022 Andy Furman
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Ron Naclerio, Cardozo High School’s basketball coach is the winningest hoops coach in PSAL history.

“He’s justifiably proud of that,” says his friend, who just happens to be New Utrecht grad and Hall of Fame broadcaster Spencer Ross. “He’s even more proud of his father, Dr. Emile Naclerio.”

Dr. Naclerio was on the scene in 1956 when Dr. Martin Luther King was stabbed – nearly fatally.

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“His surgery,” notes Ross, “saved Dr. King’s life.”

The two doctors became lifetime friends.

Ross says Ron carries around a copy of a letter Dr. King sent his dad, thanking him for what he did and expressing his love and friendship.

A little post-MLK Day icing on the cake.

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As for Cardozo’s basketball team, last season they won the Queens AA Division with a 17-1 record.

Rafer (Skip to my Lou) Alston, an NBA and Streetball All-Time legend is one of the notable players in Cardozo history. Others include: Royal Ivey. Philadelphia 76ers; Duane Causwell, 18th pick in the first-round, 1990 NBA draft; Darryl Hill (Showtime) and Ryan (Special FX) Williams, Duane and Brian Woodward—the only brothers to win Iron Horse Awards.

Naclerio notes his program has produced some 81 Division I college players.

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Daniel Golub, a 6-2 soph is averaging 9.9 points-per-game for Pratt Institute’s basketball team. He’s the Owner and Founder of DG Hoops – Daniel Golub Training. He’s trained over 100 youth athletes ranging from grades one to 11 in the suburbs of Chicago and New York.

The Cannoneers of Pratt have won just four of their first 12 ballgames and are led by 5-10 soph Patrick O’Gorman – a grad of Don Bosco Prep – with an 18.8 ppg average. Cameron Hatcher, a 6-6 freshman out of Virginia Academy is averaging 15 ppg.

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Kingsborough Community College’s basketball team snapped a nine-game skid with their win over Manhattan Community College, Saturday.

Jason Whea, a soph, leads the Wave in scoring at 16 points-per-game, followed by three freshmen – Siraj Elshiekh at 15.5; Tyrese Grant, 10.2 and Nicholas Vadi at 12.

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South Shore’s basketball team is a perfect 10-0 – second in PSAL Brooklyn AA – and sports a 12-2 overall record.

The Vikes squeaked past Canarsie, 57-54 last week, and four seniors carry the club—Ma Raqusa, a six-footer; Kyron Alexander at 6-3; Devan Francis, 6-4 and Tylek Weeks at 6-5.

The Bishop Loughlin Lions hoopsters got off to a rocky 1-4 league mark. Their hopes rest on seniors Jayden Gamory at 5-9; Joe Christian, 6-1; Freddy Rojas, 6-2 and Jaream Eason at 6-5. Rounding out the squad is: Steve McGriff, 6-4; Kashaun Long, 6-3 and Nikko Trafton at 6-2.

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Noah Shy joined the Brooklyn College 1,000-point club when the senior guard scored 35 in a 121-110 losing effort last week at Hunter College. Shy becomes the 22nd BC men’s basketball player to surpass 1,000 career points.

Erasmus topped Boys and Girls High in a basketball forfeit last week, yet the Dutchman are still below the .500 mark at 2-4.

Their hopes rest with Bernard Ford, a 6-2 soph; senior guard Christopher Erskine-Giddings; 6-4 junior Jared Spooner; guards Logan Thomas; Bryan Torres; Smoby Benoit; Joshua Pierre; Trevon Coppin; Cosby Napoleon and Jalen Branwell.

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Alan (Oogie) Eganthal’s recent mention in Scholastic Roundup certainly filled the e-mail box.

David Gershon says, “Not many people were allowed to call him ‘Oogie’ – I was one of the few.”

“Al was a very good Women’s Basketball official,” notes Barry Neuberger, Athletic Director at Yeshiva of Flatbush. “We had him multiple times at NYU when I worked there. Always a great guy.”

From Irv (Ike) Pollack, a member of the 1966 Division Champion Lafayette High basketball team, now residing in Arizona: “Oogie was an excellent referee in girls’ basketball. He did some of my daughter’s games when she was in high school. She’s 40 now. Times flies, doesn’t it?”

From Ken Gershon, a former Lafayette High basketballer, and member of Coach Gil Fershtman’s first team in 1960-61: “Alan was a close friend of my brother (David) and we grew up in the same neighborhood. Alan refereed quite a few of my games.

“I coached 662 games in 30 years at Hillcrest High School, but reading about his success in golf reminded me that I was PSAL Golf Commissioner during his amazing run as golf coach. Cardozo was a powerhouse for years in golf.”

Eganthal coached baseball at Richmond Hill High School for 16 years – and softball for eight – 1973-1998.

He also was golf coach at Cardozo High where his teams were 80-0 in league play in eight seasons, plus two PSAL City Championships.

He coached jayee basketball at FDR High School (’69-’72), and mentored Vinnie Johnson – The Microwave – who later played for the NBA’s Detroit Pistons.

Andy Furman is a Fox Sports Radio national talk show host. Previously, he was a scholastic sports columnist for the Brooklyn Eagle. He may be reached at: [email protected] Twitter: @AndyFurmanFSR

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