Thomas Jefferson’s Jaquan Lynch and his New York City teammates weren’t about to let any out-of-towners spoil their day at the Jordan Brand Classic.
Lynch and the White team, made up of senior all-stars from across the five boroughs, trailed their Black team of metro-area counterparts for most of the regional game at the Barclays Center on Saturday night.
Lynch scored 14 points to go along with four assists and four rebounds and was a key part in his squad’s 114–102 comeback win.
“We can’t let some kids from Jersey come and beat us in our home town,” Lynch said. “We weren’t going to let that happen.”
His team trailed 91–84 with 8:00 left in the game before it started to heat up. Shore Shore’s Shamiek Sheppard (12 points) buried a 3-pointer and Lynch connected with Curtis’ Hassan Martin, the game’s most valuable player, for an ally-oop slam.
Bushwick native and Christ the King guard Jon Severe added 16 points and five boards. Lynch then put the White team up for good at 96–94 with a 3-pointer from the right side with less than 4:00 to play in the game.
“I knew my shot was going to be falling,” he said.
One thing that he isn’t completely sure of is his commitment to Florida International University next fall. Lynch has not asked to be released from his National Letter of Intent with the school after coach Richard Pitino, son of Louisville head man Rick Pitino, recently took the head job at Minnesota.
Lynch, who led Jefferson to consecutive trips to the Public School Athletic League Class AA city title game, hasn’t ruled that out decommitting in the future. He stated he is waiting to see whom Florida International hirers as coach.
“I’m still signed with Florida International, but it’s not 100 percent,” he said. “Anything can happen in these next two weeks.”
The Jordan Brand Classic provided a welcome distraction from that. A win was nice, but just being selected was an honor in itself.
“That means you did something,” Lynch said. “It just feels good to be on the Barclays court, for my first time, hometown. I had fun out there.”Reach reporter Joseph Staszewski at jstaszewsk