GREENBURGH, N.Y. — When it comes to lighting up the scoreboards during Woodlands High School basketball games, it's a family thing for the Tilfords.
Cousins Imani Tilford and D'Andre Tilford grew up playing basketball together, always challenging and helping each other on the court. Each student-athlete gives the other great advice: Imani, a junior who hit the 1,000-point milestone earlier this season, now averages 28.3 points and five rebounds per game, and senior D'Andre averages 17.2 points and seven rebounds per game.
"We always played when we were little. When I learned something, I taught it to her, and she always taught me stuff, too," D'Andre said.
Practice outside of school is just a block away for the Tilfords. Whenever Imani is looking for a pickup game, she meets up with D'Andre, who lives down the street.
She also practices with her other cousin, Josh James, an Archbishop Stepinac High School senior guard who was just recruited to Monmouth University.
"When we want to practice, we just go to each other's houses," said Imani, adding that having two 6-foot-tall defenders is a big help in improving her game. "He's more competitive and much harder to get past than the girls."
Now, both Tilfords are hoping their game stays sharp to keep their winning records for the rest of the season. The girls varsity Falcons have a record of 4-3, while the boys stay strong at 5-3.
D'Andre spoke highly of his young team, which has only three seniors but said there's always room for improvement.
"We can do better — we just have to take control of the game," he said.