Falcons roll past Titans

Posted 1/18/23

The Toll Gate Titans were topped 68-44 by the Falcons at Cranston High School West during a boys Division II Basketball showdown on Sunday afternoon.

Marcus Chung, a senior guard, led the Falcons …

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Falcons roll past Titans


The Toll Gate Titans were topped 68-44 by the Falcons at Cranston High School West during a boys Division II Basketball showdown on Sunday afternoon.

Marcus Chung, a senior guard, led the Falcons with 13 points, while Nick Masse, also a senior guard, finished second in scoring for West with 12 points.

Jackson Cehelsky, a guard, scored 13 points for the Titans.

“Cehelsky is our senior,” Toll Gate head coach Richard Grenier said. “He’s a marked man when we play because he’s scoring 17 points a game. So, a good defender is always on him.”

“Then, usually the second best defender is on Dylan Perreault,” Grenier said. “He’s been a double-double guy all year long. He just had an 18-point, 12-rebound night against Tiverton. So, he’ll be a nice senior to have next year.”

Perreault, a junior forward and center, finished the game with six points.

Liam Leahy, a sophomore guard, matched Cehelsky with a team-leading 13 points.

“This was a good game for him,” Grenier said. “He gained confidence attacking the basket.”

Leahy is one of five sophomores on Toll Gate.

“We’re the youngest team in Division II,” Grenier said. “And every time we take the floor, we know that experience-wise we’re up against it. But we preach playing hard and forgetting about the score.”

“It’s tough when you get down early,” Grenier added. “It’s really easy for teams to quit on you. But these young guys, they haven’t quit on me all year. And moving forward, I’m hoping that they continue with their work ethic, and positive things will happen because the future is really bright for us.”

“It may not look like it right now on the scoreboard, but we have a lot of young kids and our freshmen team is doing really well,” Grenier explained. “They just beat St. Rays 70-65. So, the program is headed in the right direction. I’ve had young teams before at West Warwick and we built them into some pretty good teams. So, it’s a good bunch of kids. They work really hard.”

West jumped out to an early 8-0 advantage after Chung and Anthony Veltri buried back-to-back 3-pointers and Lucian Spremullo sank a breakaway layup.

The Titans first point of the game came when Cehelsky hit a free throw, which inched Toll Gate within 8-1.

Masse extended the West buffer to 10-1 when he scored with a put back bank-shot.

The Falcons upped their margin to 17-3 when Veltri assisted to Chung for an old-fashioned 3-point play, and then Adreyan Perez stole the ball and hit a breakaway layup.

Soon after, Jaymien Aponte, a junior, made a free throw before Kennedy Arias scored a fast-break basket, which extended the West margin to 20-5.

Midway through the second quarter, Masse hit three free throws and pushed the Falcons lead up to 27-9.

With 3:21 remaining in the first half, Toll Gate got the deficit down to 27-14, after three free throws from Leahy, and a put back from Leonaldo Victor.

Victor, a senior guard, totaled seven points in the game.

Nevertheless, the Falcons closed the second quarter with a 10-2 run and led 37-16 at halftime.

That spurt saw Chung score six points and Aponte and Spremullo score a layup each.

West started the third frame on a 7-0 run where Masse made a layup, Spremullo sank three free throws, and Veltri scored a breakaway layup, which gave the Falcons a 44-16 edge.

Leahy halted the Falcons spurt when he scored with a layup and pulled the Titans within 44-18.

However, Masse answered with a breakaway layup, and then Chung netted a bucket, and that ballooned the Falcons buffer to 48-18.

Toll Gate sophomore forward/center Stephen Amargo responded with a corner trey, and then a put back, and that pulled the Titans within 48-23.

With under two minutes remaining in the contest, the Titans drew within 66-44 when Cehelsky made a layup, and then Leahy a jump shot.

Perez concluded the game with a breakaway layup during the final seconds, and that helped the Falcons earn the 68-44 victory.

Toll Gate dropped to 1-6 in the league after the loss and 3-8 overall. On Tuesday, the Titans hosted Providence Country Day, but that score was unavailable at press time. The Titans will play next on Thursday night at Times 2 Academy.

Falcons, Titans, basketball


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