MOUNTAIN LAKES, NJ - Playing top-notch defense in the second and third quarters -- a 16-minute stretch during which time their opponent managed just 14 total points -- the Summit High School Boys Varsity Basketball Team defeated Mountain Lakes, 45-40. The victory was the Hilltoppers' 11th in-a-row, a streak which began January 7.

The Maroon and White were paced by three of their senior captains, with Eric Baier leading all scorers with 16 points, Will Hellings notching a 10-point, 11-rebound Double-Double, and Joe Lusardi adding 10 points.

David McFadden had 15, Spencer Myler 12, and Chris Pionski added eight for the Lakers.

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Summit trailed 14-9 after the opening quarter, but them claimed the second stanza 15-7 to take a three-point lead at the break. 'Lakes could manage but seven points again in the third, and the Hilltoppers nudged their advantage to seven heading to the fourth.

The 'Top, which improved to a spiffy 14-2 on the season, has made a habit -- especially throughout the current winning run -- of being able to see out close games, even if it's not always been pretty and-or easy.

Their latest win was no exception to that pattern.

Up 41-30 with 4:30 remaining, Summit would score just four points the rest of the way while getting called for a string of fouls put the Lakers on the line and, subsequently, right back into the game courtesy of a 10-2 jaunt. Up 43-40, Hellings sank two late free throws to provide the visitors' final points, cement his Double-Double and -- most importantly -- safely tuck the game back into the Hilltopper refrigerator.

Summit now returns home February 1 to face Union at the Main Gym. Tip-off is set for 2 p.m.