Robert Bailey, Gleaner Writer
Hydel's coach Kurt Stewart said hard work and dedication were key elements contributing to his team retaining this year's Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA)/KFC Under-19 basketball title.
Hydel recorded an easy 75-61 victory over Kingston College (KC) to win the best-of-three series 2-0 at the National Stadium Courts on Monday.
"We supported each other a lot throughout the season and we worked together as a team through thick and thin," said Stewart.
"We are very happy for this victory because these boys put in the work and they are amazing, and I am proud of the work that they put in," Stewart said.
The Ferry-based school was led to victory courtesy of Deano Hibbert's team-high 20 points and seven rebounds. Hibbert received solid support from Brian Martin (15), Brian Richards (13) and Tevin Campbell (10 points, nine rebounds).
Cliffton Jean was the leading scorer for KC with 23 points.
Hydel started very slowly due to poor shooting and passing from Hibbert and Martin. KC took advantage and took a 17-13 lead at the end of the first quarter.
"I think we played well throughout this match, but there are still some areas that I think we need to work on ahead of the all-island championship," Stewart stated.
Meanwhile, in the junior final, which was played as a curtain-raiser, Ardenne High recorded their fourth consecutive lien on the Under-16 title with a 43-40 extra-time victory over KC, to also win their best-of-three series 2-0.
The Basil Barrett-coached Ardenne were led to victory courtesy of Malik McCarty's team-high 17 points. Malik Pusey, with 23 points and eight rebounds, and Jamie Brown, seven points and 10 rebounds, were the main contributors for KC.
"We are very happy for this victory because the boys have worked very hard this season," said Barrett. "It was a tough game, but I know that once it went into overtime that we would come out on top because we were the fitter team."