Buffalo, NY- After a number of critical off-season moves and a handful of new teams, the Champions League kicked off it’s seventh season. In game one, Sponge Bob Square Pants rolled past Norfolk N’ Chance. John Papincak started off hot, scoring 22 first half points for Norfolk N’ Chance, but it wasn’t enough to slow down Jon Burgio who had a dominating performance with 38 points as he looks to work his way back into the Top 5 on the All-Time Scoring list. Adam Lafluer added another 25 points in Sponge Bob’s 98-78 point win. In game two, R.I.P. Ent took on D’Andre Bobbitt and Buffalo’s Finest. Mitch Reese carried the load for R.I.P. Ent scoring a game high 30 points, but it was newcomer Roy Wallace who stole the show scoring 24 points while leading Buffalo’s Finest to a 79-72 point victory over one of the BSWA’s most storied franchises.
In the 5pm slot Dave Hall was welcomed back to the Champions League after a brief hiatus following his fallout with the Hoosiers. They were tested by league veterans White Men Can’t Jump, who made waves in the off-season by signing All-Star Perry Davis. Dave Hall led a balanced attack with 18 points to lock up the win, 62-37. In the 6pm slot, Court Justice the reigning champions squared off against Joe Nezezon and the Raw Dawgs. Kevin Ford led Court Justice with 21 points to dampen the Raw Dawgs debut and lock up the win, 56-50.
In Western Division play, The U.H. made their return with a new look and played newcomers Phi Slamma Jamma. Phi Slamma Jamma got off to a very slow start as they got acclimated to the Knights court and fell behind 25-12 by halftime. In the second half they made a run behind Brian Jolley who inspired his teammates with a strong two-handed dunk as they cut the lead to eight. But that was as close as it would get as James Capuana led The U.H. with 13 points to cap off the 47-33 point win.
Nick Pfohman made his return to the Champions League after sitting out Season 6 following a bitter dispute with former teammate/current teammate Matt Sommer. Sommer split the team in two for Season 6 and tried his hand as the GM of Prestige Worldwide, but rejoined Pfohman for the 7th season in a heartwarming reunion after Prestige Worldwide missed registration for the current season. Yet it wasn’t the storybook return they were hoping for as the ran into a revamped JLin & The Temptations squad that was hungry for redemption after a disappointing season last session. Marquis Ware led JLin & The Temptations with 21 points in the win and did so while sporting his very own iconic BSWA jersey after going all of season six without one.
In the 9pm game Nick DeMonte and the Fastbreakers took on THE Goon Squad, who were led by Mario DeNicola (14 points), who began his BSWA career with the Buffalo Bananaheads of the APEX League. BSWA analysts were quite impressed with the fundamental play of THE Goon Squad and their strategic adjustments throughout the game. However they came up just short in their debut as Paul Quarcini (15 points) did his damage on the inside in the first half and then Shawn Satarian (20 points) laid it on in the second half as THE Goon Squad began to double team Quarcini. Final Score: Fastbreakers 55, THE Goon Squad 52.
The final game of the night was a match-up for the ages as two of the Western Division’s most dominant teams faced off in a nail-biting game featuring nine lead changes throughout. The VeryAggressiveGuys welcomed the return of Ben Walkow to the lineup after sitting out last season and his impact was felt immediately as he led the VAG with 14 points, including a huge three-pointer down the stretch. But the Biilies had their own star to lead them on opening night as Mark Ward was nearly unstoppable leading all scorers with 34 points. After 39 minutes and 58 seconds of play it all came down to free throws as Jake Walkow was sent to the line with two seconds remaining and a chance to tie it. He missed the first and Frank Pieri came up with the rebound on the second to lead the Billies to a 67-65 point win.
Action resumes next week at 3pm.
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