WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. – Palisades Prep senior Jatique Bond sat on the bench in the second quarter in foul trouble, waiting patiently to get back into the Section 1 Class C boys basketball championship semifinal Monday.
Bond would get his opportunity in the third quarter. The first-year varsity player would initiate a major Palisades Prep run that fueled the second seed to a 66-46 win over sixth-seeded Haldane at the Westchester County Center.
Palisades Prep, 17-3 on the season, will play No. 1 seed Children’s Village in the championship game at 2 p.m. Saturday. Children's Village beat No. 5 Tuckahoe in the other semifinal Monday.
“In the third quarter, I just wanted to help us win so we can get the gold ball,” said the 6-foot-2 Bond.
Bond scored eight of his 12 points in the pivotal third quarter. Haldane had closed to within six points, at 34-28, and seized the momentum. It would not last long. Bond triggered a 12-0 run, with a conventional three-point play that left Haldane in a 16-point hole. Bond had six points during the surge.
“My teammates started finding me and I was able to start scoring,” Bond said. “I couldn’t have done anything without the good passes they gave me.”
Bond has made an impression in his first year playing varsity basketball. Palisades Prep coach Sean Stahn, a former Ardsley standout, received a call from one of the physical education teachers concerning Bond.
“Joe Leone told me that Jatique was a big kid who could dribble the ball,” Stahn said. “Jatique came off the bench for us and then in the Yonkers tournament he gave us great energy. He is our most aggressive big guy.”
Once Bond established himself, Stahn said, he earned a starting spot. Bond has started the last 10 games for the Phoenix.
“Jatique is not afraid to go up against bigger, stronger guys,” Stahn said. “He wants to be in there every minute of every game.
“Jatique is a high-energy player. When he scores, his defense picks up and he plays even harder than he did before.”
Isaiah Ward led Palisades Prep with 16 points, Fred Truss Jr. added 13 points, and Kevin Sabino finished with 10 points.