RED LION — When the final horn sounded inside Ronald Fitzkee Gymnasium on Tuesday night, Eli Brooks didn't head for the locker room.
The Spring Grove star had photos to pose for and autographs to sign for youngsters on his special night.
The Rockets' senior, a celebrity in the high school basketball community, reached a major milestone in his career during his team's 53-37 victory over Red Lion.
The Michigan recruit became just the 13th player in the history of the York-Adams League, and its predecessors, to score 2,000 career points.
He entered the game needing just five points to eclipse 2,000.
Brooks began his scoring by knocking down a jumper from beyond the arc at the 5:18 mark of the first quarter. Two minutes and eight seconds later, Brooks made history by connecting on a 3-point shot from the right wing for 2,001 points. He went on to lead all scorers with 24 points.
"This is going to be one of those stories I can tell my kids," Brooks said. "I'm happy I did it, but I'm not overly happy. I'm just glad we got the win."
Brooks felt at the end of last season that the 2,000 mark was attainable.
'I thought I could do it, but I had to get it not just catching and shooting, nor just pulling up (for jumpers). I had to be able to finish around the rim. I worked on that all season," he said.
The work paid off. Brooks achieved his goal.
"It's something he set out as a goal a long time ago," said James Brooks, Eli's father and Spring Grove's head coach. "Things have fallen right for it to happen. To have the right team and right teammates, that doesn't happen if you don't have those."
James Brooks knew when his son was in second grade that he had the potential to be a special player.
""He's a very good student and student of the game. He understands it. He'll get on You Tube and watch a jab step," the coach said.
Brooks was one of three Spring Grove players to finish in double figures. Panter supplied 12 points and Grant Sterner had 11, including two big 3-point shots to close his team's scoring in the third quarter.
Panter provided the assist on Brooks' shot which eclipsed the 2,000-point mark.
"It's awesome to be part of something like that," Panter said. "I think it's amazing for anyone to be a 1,000-point scorer, but to be able to double that and be to a degree that Eli is, that's crazy."
Spring Grove (13-4 overall, 9-2 in York-Adams Division I) trailed just once in the game, at 3-0, but Red Lion hung tough, trailing by just four points following a low-scoring first half (22-18). The Rockets gradually widened the margin in the second half.
Jamel Foster turned in a terrific performance for Red Lion, pumping in 23 points, which included four 3-point baskets.
In addition to Brooks, the other male players who scored 2,000 or more points in the York-Adams League and it's predecessors, are: Andrew Nicholas, Eastern (2,504); Jacob Iati, York Catholic (2,388); Adam Miller, Kennard-Dale (2,236); Jon Iati, York Catholic (2,216); and Brian Pearl, York Catholic (2,175). Sierra Moore of Delone Catholic leads the female all-time leading scorers with 2,595 points. She's followed by Autumn Lau, Northeastern (2,304); Lauren Beckley, Fairfield (2,258); Barb Deshields, York High (2,175); Kady Schrann, York Catholic (2,162); Meggan Quinn, Red Lion (2,142); and Meredith Cox, Delone Catholic (2,097).
Northeastern 80, South Western 40: At Hanover, the Bobcats bounced back from their first loss of the season on Friday night to Central York by pounding the Mustangs on the road. Antonio Rizzuto and Fred Mulbah led the Bobcats by scoring 21 points apiece. Brandon Coleman scored 12 points for Northeastern, while Nate Wilson knocked in 10. For the Mustangs, Ryan Luke scored 10 points. The Bobcats improved to 18-1 overall and 10-1 in York-Adams Division I.
New Oxford 56, Dallastown 54: At New Oxford, the home team won the back-and-forth York-Adams Division I affair behind a combined 44 points from John Wessel (15), Jordin Brown (15) and Ben Lehman (14). The Wildcats were paced by Donovan Catchings (14), Brandon McGlynn (11) and Ben Ward (10). New Oxford improved to 10-8 overall and 5-6 in D-I. Dallastown fell to 11-6 and 6-5.
Central York 63, York High 54: At Central York, Courtney Batts poured in 16 points as one of four Panthers to reach double digits. Garrett Markey (11), Carter Luckenbaugh (10) and Niko Sobestanovich (10) were the other Central players in double figures. York High was led by a game-high 22 points from Jacquez Casiano, including four 3-pointers. Central is 12-7 overall and 7-4 in York-Adams Division I. York fell to 6-11 and 4-7.
York Catholic 74, Hanover 57: At Hanover, Melik Martin’s 25 points carried the Irish past the Nighthawks. D’Andre Davis added 16 points for York Catholic. Hunter Martz had 20 points and teammate Cole Gebhart recorded 17 points for Hanover. The first-place Irish moved to 17-1 overall and 11-0 in York-Adams Division III.
West York 42, York Suburban 36: At West York, the home team used a 16-8 fourth-quarter surge to rally for the win. Kenton Meckley led the Bulldogs with 16 points. Jack Schultz matched him with 16 points for the Trojans.
Lebanon Christian 65, Red Lion Christian 36: At Red Lion Christian, Myles Willard led the Swordsmen with 11 points in the loss.
Dover 54, Susquehannock 44: At Glen Rock, the first-place Eagles improved to 12-5 overall and 8-2 in York-Adams Division II. Keith Davis (19), Elijah Sutton (15) and Victor Dorm (12) hit double digits for Dover.
Reach Dick VanO'Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org.