The Naples Wildcats clawed their way to a 46-43 comeback victory over the Vilseck Falcons on Saturday at Vicenza, maintaining their undefeated record while dispatching their third and final Division I opponent of the regular season.
Star guard Terrell Staten provided the quantity, with a game-high 17 points, and the quality, with a timely go-ahead three-pointer late in the fourth quarter. Matt Bruhn added 14 points to join Staten in double figures.
The Wildcats, along with fellow Italian Division I school Vicenza, are limited by geography to a slighter large-school schedule than the divisional rivals based north of the Alps. That opportunity expanded this weekend as Stuttgart and Vilseck made the trip south for the four-team gathering at Vicenza, and the Wildcats made the most of it.
Naples, which handled Stuttgart 51-38 on Friday night, was the only team of the four to win both of its games on the weekend. Vilseck beat host Vicenza 52-48 on Friday and nearly pulled off an impressive Italian sweep before the Wildcats persevered Saturday.
Baumholder 38/29, Alconbury 16/30: At Baumholder, two Division III rivals staged a dramatic showdown worthy of the upcoming European tournament.
The fireworks came Saturday, a day after Baumholder earned a steady 22-point win over the visiting Dragons behind a 21-point effort from Nathaniel Horton.
The Bucs again built an early lead Saturday, but Alconbury scratched back into the game while holding Baumholder to just six total points in the second and third quarters. The comeback put the Dragons in striking distance, and Tyler Gilhuys struck with a game-winning three-pointer as time expired.
Gilhuys finished with a game-high 11 points; teammate Fritz Sherenco contributed seven points and nine rebounds in the Dragon win.
SHAPE 61/48, Kaiserslautern 43/42: At Kaiserslautern, the Spartans continued their strong season with a road sweep of a solid Division I rival.
SHAPE started a new win streak a week after taking its first two losses of the season at Ramstein. The Spartans won't play any more Division I opponents until the tournament, and in fact have just one set of games, a Feb. 19-20 doubleheader against AFNORTH, remaining on their regular season schedule.
The backcourt duo of Austin Stephens and Cameron Little again provided much of the offensive firepower for the Spartans. Stephens led all scorers with 17 points on Friday, while Little chipped in 12; Little led all scorers Saturday with 15 points while Stephens notched 14.
Ja'Markus Myles scored a combined 26 points on the weekend.
Ramstein 59/51, Lakenheath 35/42: At Ramstein, the defending Division I champs withstood another worthy challenge from the north.
The Royals swept the Lancers a week after doing the same to the SHAPE Spartans. Ramstein and Naples are the only remaining unbeaten teams in Division I.
Kendell Allen scored 14 points and Mitchell McKinney added 11 in Friday's comeback win. The Royals shook off a 9-2 first-quarter lead, outscoring the visitors by 12 in the second quarter and 15 to ice the game in the fourth.
Ramstein took an early lead Saturday and never relinquished it. Keith Little scored 15 to pace the Royals, while John McClain scored a game-high 16 in defeat.
Sigonella 50/40, AOSR 38/31: At Sigonella: the Jaguars took a pair of wins from the Falcons.
A sharpshooting effort by Connor Smithgall fueled Friday's victory. Smithgall made three of four attempts from three-point range as part of a 17-point scoring effort; he added eight points on Saturday.
Jason Berlin stuffed the stat sheet on both occasions. The guard totaled 10 points, 10 assists and four steals Friday, then amassed 14 points, four rebounds, nine assists and five steals on Saturday.
Sigonella won Friday after building a 20-1 first-quarter lead.
Saturday's rematch required a Jaguar rally to escape a 25-25 halftime tie.
Marymount 76/46, Florence 15/26: At Florence, the undermanned Royals still cruised to a pair of victories.
Marymount was missing several players due to illness, but senior forward Lotanna Mba stepped up with a pair of highly productive efforts. Mba scored 18 points on Friday, aided by a 17-point performance by teammate Isaac Dilbert, and posted 12 points Saturday. Giovanni Acampora scored 12 in each game for the Royals.