The River Dell Golden Hawks Boys Basketball team defeated Ramsey on Friday night and while the Rams put up a close fight, River Dell was able to record the 58-51 victory.
The Golden Hawks started off strong with junior Dan Desiderio scoring the first basket to lead the Hawks in the right direction. Ramsey not far behind, was only down by one point at the end of the first quarter (15-14.)
Desiderio had several lay-ups and three-pointers concluding his personal record to 26 points the whole game making him the strongest scorer of the night amongst both teams.
“It’s a team effort” Desiderio said. “If everyone didn’t do their job I wouldn’t have gotten nearly as many points as I did during tonight’s game.”
Ramsey’s best scorer of the night, Griffin Robbiee, had a total of 14 points, which made it a tough competition for the Golden Hawks.
It wasn’t until after half-time, right before the beginning of the fourth quarter, did the Golden Hawks take a strong lead. Desiderio took a leap and threw a shot to close the quarter at 46-33.
At this point it looked good for the Golden Hawks, but Ramsey shortly switched the pace up.
Ramsey got back in the game making it a nerve-racking fourth quarter. With 1:46 left in the game, the Golden Hawks were up 52-50.
The stands filled with anxious fans as head coach Ron VanSaders relied on senior Justin Murphy at the foul line. A Rams technical foul led Murphy, who had gone four-for-four, to the line.
“I wanted to shoot and make it so badly” Murphy said. “I knew our team could win this game, so I knew I needed to step up during these last few seconds.”
Head Coach Ron VanSaders noted “We almost threw it away, but we pulled through and Justin Murphy helped us out by throwing in some nice shots towards the end.” He also admitted “It’s going to be close like this every game, we just need to catch up our speed with some of the new guys, but I have high hopes for this season.”
The final score led the Golden Hawks with a win for their first game of the season. With a starting record of 1-0, next the Golden Hawks travel to take on Mahwah on Dec. 18, 7pm.
Editor's Note: Isabella Congemi is a student in the River Dell High School Senior Options Program.