Boys Basketball: Hughes’ shot is on, and so are Wildcats

Shoreham-Wading River's Dan Hughes, guarded by Eastport/South Manor's Tristan Lucacci, scored 25 points in his team's home opener. (Credit: Robert O'Rourk)
Shoreham-Wading River’s Dan Hughes, guarded by Eastport/South Manor’s Tristan Lucacci, scored 25 points in his team’s home opener. (Credit: Robert O’Rourk)


It is around the time of the year when Dan Hughes makes the transformation from football player to basketball player. This year, however, that metamorphosis was delayed by an extended football season in which Hughes quarterbacked Shoreham-Wading River to a Long Island championship.

But there was no question that the basketball Dan Hughes arrived for his team’s home opener on Tuesday night.

Shoreham’s big men came up big, including Hughes, whose smooth shooting touch highlighted a 64-30 non-league blowout of Eastport/South Manor. The 6-foot-5 senior hit for a game-high 25 points, with five 3-pointers. He also had 5 assists.

It was all good for the Wildcats (1-1), whose shooting was on the mark. They landed 55.8 percent of their shots from the field, including 10 of 16 from 3-point distance.

Jonah Caldwell, a 6-4 senior, netted 10 of his 16 points during a 22-2 run that snapped a 15-15 tie and closed out the second quarter with the Wildcats ahead, 35-17.

The Wildcats sank 9 of 15 field-goal attempts in the second quarter and 7 of 11 in the third. Early in the third quarter, Kieran Qualley (two) and Hughes nailed three 3-pointers in succession for a 44-18 lead.

Eastport/South Manor, playing its first game of the season, shot 0 for 8 from the field in the fourth quarter when it managed only 2 points from a pair of free throws by James Murphy.

Tristan Lucacci had 12 points and 4 assists for the Sharks, who managed only 18 rebounds.

Ethan Wiederkehr, a 6-4 sophomore, came off the bench to provide the Wildcats with 9 points and 8 rebounds.

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