Defending D-II champ Aviano proves its dominance in Italy

Defending European Division II champion Aviano left little doubt about which school is the team to beat in Italy by inflicting two 35-point defeats on the previously unbeaten Vicenza Cougars.

Aviano’s senior triumvirate of forwards Shaheed Seaton and Sean Outing and All-Europe guard Jamal Tuck paved the way for the Saints, who led 37-19 at halftime of Friday’s 78-43 romp and went on a 29-8 third-quarter run in Saturday’s 79-44 victory.

Tuck made the most of his rare opportunity to play full games, scoring 44 points and stealing the ball 10 times Friday, and coming back to score 25 points with five steals Saturday. Tuck ordinarily logs plenty of bench time as the Saints seek to hold down the score against overmatched opponents.

Seaton also enjoyed the extra time on the court, pulling down 21 rebounds on Friday and 14 on Saturday. Outing scored 10 points on Friday and a game-high 29 on Saturday as Aviano stayed perfect — 6-0 overall and 3-0 in Region IV play.

The Saints set the tone for the weekend early, outscoring visiting Vicenza 23-7 over the first eight minutes Friday. Shakael Skeete managed to score 19 points against Aviano on Friday; Fabian Severson led Vicenza (4-2, 2-1) with 15 on Saturday.

In other boys games of note:

Naples 71, Sigonella 70: Saturday at Sigonella, Kevon Navarro scored 28 points, 12 coming on three-pointers, as the Wildcats handed 2009 D-IV champion Sigonella its first defeat of the season and dropped the Jaguars out of a tie for the lead in the American Schools in Italy League (Region IV).

Nigel Alexander added 11 points and Sam Person 10 for Naples, which won for the first time this season. The Wildcats, who fell to 0-5 overall after Friday night’s 64-62 loss to the Jags, are 1-5 overall and 1-2 in league play.

Sigonella (5-1, 2-1 in Region IV) got a game-high 31 points from Larry Stevenson and 10 points and eight rebounds from James Campbell in Saturday’s game.

Hohenfels 61, Bamberg 39: Saturday at Hohenfels, newcomer Jamie Thompkins scored 18 points and stole the ball three times as the Tigers handed Bamberg its first loss of the season.

Hohenfels, which lost at Bamberg 62-52 Friday night while missing 11 layups, held the Barons to 13 points in the second half Saturday while scoring 33.

Jordan Gaddy added 13 points for Hohenfels (3-3 overall, 1-1 Region III). Bamberg (5-1, 3-1) was led by Danny Kieser, who had 10 points, seven rebounds and three steals.

AFNORTH 59, Baumholder 52: Saturday at Baumholder, All-European Artrel Davis won his scoring duel against AFNORTH’s Yannick Hickman, but the host Lions won the war with a sweep.

Davis broke loose for 44 points Saturday, but Hickman’s 26 points and game-high 12 rebounds, and a strong second half by the Lions, were enough for AFNORTH .

Hickman had 20 points and 13 rebounds in Friday’s 60-58 victory. Davis and Alex Johnson each scored 17 to lead Baumholder in that game.

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