Lynett Tournament: Dunmore boys play Scranton

It's been sticking in the craw of Dunmore players since last December and it's been motivating them.

An inexperienced group of Bucks took on the explosive Scranton Knights in last season's final of the Lynett Memorial Basketball Tournament.

Unable to withstand the defensive pressure, Dunmore fell in convincing fashion, 77-47.

Tonight, the teams meet again in the 61st annual championship game at 8 at the Lackawanna College Student Union.

Scranton Prep will play Holy Cross in the consolation game at 6.

"This means a lot to us," Dunmore junior guard John Rinaldi said. "Last year, I think we were just excited to be in the final. This year, that's not all that we want."

Dunmore, which owns 11 Lynett tournament championships, is in the final for the third straight season.

Coming off a tough win over Holy Cross in Monday's semifinal, the Bucks will rely on the experience of playing in the championship game as they try to dethrone Scranton.

"Even in the semifinal against Holy Cross, I told the guys, they have experience," Dunmore coach Tony Lacertoso said. "Last year, they were sophomores and they made the final. This year, they are juniors and they have a year under their belt.

"That experience kicked in against Holy Cross."

Scranton punched its ticket to the championship game with a 59-41 win over Scranton Prep in the semifinal behind Terry Turner's 25 points. Turner was named Most Valuable Player in last season's tournament after scoring 39 points in two games.

In last year's matchup against Dunmore, the Knights scored the game's first 18 points and forced 15 turnovers in the first quarter.

Malik Draper, who also made the all-tournament team last season, added 17 points. He scored 16 in Scranton's win over Scranton Prep on Monday.

Scranton is 4-1 in championship games since 1996.

"We need to play our game and do what the coaches tell us to do," Turner said. "We have to continue to execute the defense."

Contact the writer: jbfawcett@timesshamrock.com