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Rivals Mamaroneck, New Rochelle Meet in Playoffs

MAMARONECK, N.Y. – The Mamaroneck Tigers beat New Rochelle this season for the first time since 1971. If they want to advance to the second round of the playoffs, they will have to do so again.

The No. 9 Tigers will face the No. 8 Huguenots at New Rochelle on Friday at 4:30 p.m. in the first round of the Class AA playoffs. Mamaroneck coach Tyrone Carver Jr. knows that it will be a challenge to beat New Rochelle again, but added that his team is prepared.

“New Rochelle is very well coached. Very athletic team, very talented,” Carver said. “We welcome the challenge, obviously. We don’t shy away from it and we’re familiar with them. We’re excited for the opportunity to play them.”

The Tigers beat the Huguenots in overtime, 58-55, on New Rochelle’s home court on Feb. 6 behind Matt Mezansky’s 20 points. Carver said his team can take one key lesson from that win into Friday’s game.

“Mentally, I think that we understand that we can play with them. So I think that’s huge,” Carver said. “We’ve been able to play with them in the past but not able to beat them.”

If the Tigers want to beat the Huguenots again, their three best players will have to lead them. Matt Mezansky earned all-league, all-conference and all-section honors for the second consecutive year.

Alex Lanni earned all-league honors and honorable mention for all-conference, while Gerry McMullin earned honorable mention for all-league.

Carver, too, earned accolades as he was named Conference 2 Coach of the Year. He said the award was a total team honor.

“Coach of the Year is just a tribute to our hard work of the staff over the last couple of years. It’s a tribute to our kids and the success we were able to have this year,” Carver said. “(I’m) definitely, definitely humbled that the coaches in Conference 2 voted for me for that award.”

The 12-win Tigers have a chance to once again beat the New Rochelle, which will have leading scorer and rebounder Joe Clarke back on Friday, and move on to, most likely, a showdown with top-seeded Mount Vernon. But the coach is expecting a battle against the rival Huguenots, and if the last match up was any indication, he should.

“We know it’s not going to be easy,” Carver said.

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