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After a few games of coaching Terence Romey, York Tech boys’ basketball head coach Jim Collins knew he’d become a 1,000-point scorer.

Romey’s first season on varsity was as a sophomore in 2016-17, and the guard scored 30-plus in three of his first four games.

“I knew right away,” Collins said. “He was very impressive.”

In the Spartans’ game against unbeaten Littlestown last week, Romey hit a milestone that no Tech basketball player had reached in more than 35 years. His 27-point performance in the Spartans’ 75-62 loss put him over the 1,000-point threshold. He joins Stu Aldinger (1972) and Ron Zeager (1982) as the only Tech basketball players in the elite club.

“It’s a blessing to me,” he said. “I always dreamed of scoring 1,000 points in my basketball career.”

Size doesn’t slow Romey: Romey is listed at 5-feet, 7-inches on the roster, but Collins admits he’s probably closer to 5-5.

“But he plays like he’s 6-5,” Collins said. “He’s a really small, quick, athletic guard who has a big heart. If you’re guarding him, it’s a nightmare, because he works his tail off to get open to get a shot.”

Collins said Romey, who is fourth in the York-Adams League at 20.1 points per game, can score several different ways, but he said his best attribute is his “bulldog” mentality.

“When he wants to score, he just goes at it,” said Collins, who is in his fifth season at the helm. “He can step back and shoot a 3, but he’s not afraid to go inside at all."

When Romey was younger, he said his role was to get to the bucket. Even though he’s a better shooter now, he has kept that mindset of driving to the hoop with him.

“That’s what I practiced when I was younger,” Romey said. “Now that I’m older, I kept that with me. It doesn’t matter if they’re bigger or smaller than me.”

Romey’s maturation: Early on in Romey’s varsity career, Collins said the guard had a tendency to take bad shots in Tech’s up-tempo system. Now, he’s learned he doesn’t need to force anything.

“I’m very impressed with how he’s developed,” Collins said. “He’s matured as a scorer. I think he took a number of bad shots his sophomore year and the first part of his junior year. I think he’s grown up and has learned he doesn’t need to shoot every time and can find some open shots for his teammates.”

Romey also became a better leader last season for Tech, Collins said.

“I noticed it last year that he started to police the other players like the coaches did,” Collins said. “We took that as good leadership. He’s the ultimate leader. He leads by example, but when he does say something his teammates listen. He’s been a joy to work with as a coach.”

York Tech’s improvement: Collins was excited about the future of York Tech basketball when he saw the talent of a group of ninth-graders on the freshman team: Romey, Jahkwan Batty and Jamal Jackson.

As sophomores, the three started on a squad that took its lumps, ending the campaign at 4-18. Last season, however, the Spartans went 14-9 and made the Y-A League playoffs. It was Tech’s first winning season since 1989.

“I don’t think anyone expected us last year to have a winning record,” Collins said. “I think we shocked some people that we could gel and hold it together for four quarters.”

The Spartans are 7-4 this season and are 4-2 in Division III play. Collins and Romey both said the team’s goal is to have another winning season and go to another league tournament, which Collins said would be a first in Tech history.

Reach Jacob Calvin Meyer at jmeyer@yorkdispatch.com.

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