The fourth grade boys AAU basketball team, Phoenix of Darien, notched its second win of the season on Saturday at John Jay High School in Cross River, NY against the Hudson Valley Wolves by a score of 27-25.

Either team could have been the victor in the final minute, but the Firebirds stayed true to their mantra: "Phoenix always wins the close ones."

Phoenix's full court press, tough man-to-man defense and relentless fast break proved too much for the Wolves.

The well-conditioned Phoenix team forced the Wolves to commit several turnovers which resulted in easy field goals.

Phoenix fell behind early by six points, but rallied back to take a one-point lead at the half on a two-point buzzer beater by Logan Troeger. Troeger finished with two points and led his team with seven rebounds.

Ben Secor was excellent on both ends of the court. He led Phoenix in scoring with seven points, including a baseline three. He added five rebounds, four steals and a blocked shot.

Ryan Howard scored four points along with four rebounds, two blocked shots and two steals. John Hearle scored a field goal, had two assists and three steals.

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Harrison Stockdale added a key field goal late in the game along with two assists and a steal. Sam Hadlow put up two field goals and led his team in offensive rebounding department with four.

Teddy Christensen buried two field goals and forced several turnovers as he efficiently executed the press.

Zarek Swetye got into foul trouble early, but it was worth the risk as three of his fouls prevented easy layups and the Wolves did not convert the free throws.

Hudson Hearle, the younger half of the dynamic Hearle duo, made his AAU debut and was integral to the success of his team. He committed no fouls or turnovers and kept the defensive pressure on the Wolves with his strong play on the press and fast break.

Teddy Brennan earned the defensive player of the game award. He picked up two defensive rebounds and had two steals, but it was his hustle on the press that forced the Wolves to commit many of their turnovers.