By David Terry
The Harry Jefferson Showcase, one of White Plains Basketball’s premier early-season
opportunities to set the tone for the rest of their season. Moreover, it is an opportunity for
many local teams to come and show off what they can do. Taking place at White Plains High
School, the Harry Jefferson Showcase has been an annual tradition for over a decade, and will
continue to be for years to come. This year, the White Plains Tigers were selected to play
Ramapo on the first day of the showcase.
Ramapo, a small but scrappy team, hailing from Spring Valley, looked to show everyone that
they were not simply another easy win for the Tigers. They had a few sharpshooters, and
looked to penetrate and dish out in order to defeat the Tigers with 3s and jump shots. The
Tigers, however, are overall a very well-rounded defensive-minded squad. They looked to
nullify this strategy by implementing tough defense on Ramapo’s main ball distributor, as well
as on both wings. The Tigers aimed to secure turnovers with this defensive strategy, and get
some easy fast break points.
The game actually started off quite slow. White Plains employed a small lineup to counteract
Ramapo’s small lineup. No one really made any good plays until a few minutes in, when
Sophomore Eisaiah Murphy, the team’s biggest long-range threat, drained a 22-foot three-
pointer. From there, the Tigers secured the lead and did not relinquish it. By forcing turnovers
and forcing Ramapo to throw up brick after brick, as a result of some tough defense, White
Plains was able to take an early lead, and continued to build on it for the duration of the game,
eventually takin the win by a margin of around 20 points.
Tigers’ senior forward Anthony Russo, who was very content with his squad’s play, had some
things to say. “It was really nice to see our team play with this sort of chemistry”, said Russo. “If
we keep playing this well together, I think we can go far in the postseason”. When asked about
the Tigers’ frontcourt rotation and how it works, Russo said “Me, Patrick, and Amare all have
our own roles. We do what we have to do to get buckets and defend the paint”. Russo
proceeded to tell me about how he and Amare were good at securing rebounds and defending
the paint, while Patrick was their main post scorer. It will be very intriguing to see how this
system will function in the long run, but as of right now the Tigers are 4-1, playing some of their
best basketball in years. It seems like the Tigers’ finally have a legitimate shot at a section title,
giving hope to every basketball fan in White Plains.