Odukale – now a senior – was South Shore’s “AA” playoffs MVP last year, when the team took home a city championship.
The 6-foot-4 swingman calmly dribbled the ball past the sizable Big East Tournament logo at mid-court while being challenged by Jefferson guard Dashan Crittenden. At around the three-point line at the top of the key, Odukale makes his move.
With Crittenden riding him, he took two dribbles to his left, spun to his right, beat the defender, and took one final dribble into an uncontested two-handed dunk with ten seconds to go.
It was the shot that ultimately won South Shore a second straight city title, and a second straight bid to the Federation State Championships this coming week.
“When I was driving to the rim, I was thinking about actually laying the ball up, but laying the ball up, it could be 50-50, it can rim out,” Odukale said post-game. “Then I realized, I really want it. This is what I play for. I did the spin move and I had to dunk.”
Odukale adds that he was a bit surprised at how wide open he was following the spin.
“I got grabbed, but I was way too strong for that,” said Odukale, who finished with six points, 10 assists and seven rebounds.
“I told him, you’ve gotta play for something,” said senior teammate Davis, who had 19 points and four assists. “I wanna feel his rage. Everybody’s gotta feel his rage.”
South Shore head coach Shawn Mark was emotional following the big victory, moved to tears after achieving back-to-back city titles and another trip upstate.
“I’ve been around these kids a long time,” he said, fighting through the cracks in his voice. “We’ve been through a long ride, a long journey, and these kids they represented me well. They represented the school well, I’m so proud of them.”
Kadary Richmond was named MVP after leading his team with 23 points, eight rebounds, five blocks, four assists and three steals. The soft-spoken senior also said the team had adversity to combat in order to reach this point a second consecutive time.
“It feels really good because it’s been a struggle this year on and off the court for me and my guys,” he said. “We fought through all that.”
For Jefferson, the team was led by PSAL leading scorer Kareem Welch. The senior poured in 27 points, adding 11 rebounds, six assists and six steals in the loss.
Electrifying sophomore point guard Jaquan Carlos added 23 points and four assists, and gave Jefferson the late 70-69 lead with 19 seconds to go after sinking two free throws.
It was also the second straight season that both South Shore’s boys and girls – now at five straight city titles – took both “AA” PSAL crowns in the same season, as the Lady Vikings defeated Harry S. Truman to kick off the doubleheader.
The South Shore boys will face Long Island Lutheran in the Federation semifinals this weekend.