Boys basketball team ends season with 2OT loss in semifinals
The St. Mary's boys basketball team did not relinquish its hold on the MIAA Div. 4 state championship without a struggle -- make than an epic struggle.
After winning their first two tournament games (over Winthrop and Pope John) by a combined 31 points, the Spartans ran into a feisty Snowden team that would not be denied, and after 40 minutes of basketball Monday night at Chelsea High School, St. Mary's ended up on the short end of a 63-58 decision.
"Our guys left everything on the floor," Coach Kevin Moran said, adding that he knows the loss is especially tough for the eight seniors who played their last game in blue and gold.
"The seniors led the way all year," Moran added. "They were looking to advance and get back to the (Boston) Garden. It's very disappointing, especially for them, but no one can be disappointed in their effort."
For most of the game Monday night, it looked as if St. Mary's would struggle, yet survive in its quest to return to the the Div. 4 North final (state semifinal). The Spartans led by five at the half (24-19) and by two (35-33) after three quarters. They could simply never extend the lead to a comfortable margin, however, and a Snowden 3-pointer with 20 seconds to go was enough to get the game into overtime.
St. Mary's took small leads in both of the overtimes, but the Cougars always had an answer and they took the lead for good with 1:21 left in the second OT.
Senior Matt Manning led the Spartans with 23 points and played tenaciously until the final buzzer. His classmate, Tommy Deveau, scored 11 before fouling out late in the fourth quarter. Senior Joel Berakah hit a key free throw to send the game to a second OT.
"They all played their hearts out," Moran said. "The result may not have been what we had hoped for, but we can all be proud of the effort."
Also playing their last game for the Spartans were: Marvin Bony, Mike Daly, Kyle DiFilippo, Casey Riley and John Teehan.