TERRYVILLE >> Down one point going into the fourth quarter Terryville switched from its normal man-to-man defense to a 3-2 zone and used that to kick start their offense leading them to a 51-41 win over Coginchaug and into the second round of the Class S state tournament.
One of the reasons for the switch was two of the No. 2 Kangaroos top players, senior Jake Johnson and junior Shea Tracy, sat on the bench for most of the third quarter with four fouls.
Photos: Terryville 51 Coginchaug 41
“We started the fourth going to the zone to protect Jake and Shea,” Terryville head coach Mark Fowler said. “They looked confused when we came out with it; it took them out of their rhythm and helped us get going.”
The Kangaroos opened up the fourth, with both Johnson and Tracy back on the floor, looking like the team that ran through the Berkshire League this season.
“We said in the huddle before the fourth that this is it, we have to work hard to get the win,” said Tracy who led all scorers with 21 points.
Terryville senior Tyler Trillo scored and was fouled, hitting the free-throw giving the Kangaroos a 36-34 lead, 10 seconds in the fourth.
“Trillo’s and-1 to open up the quarter to get us the lead back was huge,” Fowler said.
Tracy followed that up with two free-throws, which were followed up by a Johnson jump shot, Terryville lead 40-34 and looked in control.
After another Kangaroos stop, Trillo lined up and drilled a 3-pointer with a hand in his face; Johnson added one free-throw to cap off an 11-0 Kangaroos’ run to open the quarter, 44-34 with 3:54 left.
“We knew we needed to attack, foul trouble or not, we had to risk it,” Johnson said.
The No. 18 Blue Devils jumped out to an early lead, opening the game on an 8-0 run, five points coming from their big man, 6-4″ Devin Rodrigue.
Fowler then went to the bench, taking out 6-4″ Zach Graham and bringing in 5-11″ junior Sean Huria to slow down Rodrigue.
The first defensive possession with Huria on the court he grabbed a rebound over Rodrigue setting the tone that was there and wouldn’t be pushed around.
“I told myself that I was going to have as more boards as I could and hold Rodrigue to zero boards,” Huria said. “Or limit his boards as much as possible.”
After Rodrigue’s five points to start the game for the Blue Devils, Huria, with help, contained him, holding him to only three points the rest of the game.
“He’s getting to the point where he is healthy,” said Fowler of Huria who has struggled with leg injuries throughout the season. “He comes off the bench on he knows his roles, he gave us toughness on defense.”
“They did a nice job doubling him,” Coginchaug head coach Todd Salva said.
Coginchaug shot well in the first quarter, taking their time and finding the right shot outscoring the Kangaroos 12-8.
In the second the Kangaroos offense got going taking their first lead of the game on a Tracy layup, 16-14 with 4:45 left in the half.
The Kangaroos would lead 25-18 with under a minute left in the half when Coginchaug’s Cameron Powers hit a jumper right before the buzzer, 25-20.
Johnson would pick up his fourth foul with 4:04 left in the third quarter, leading 29-26. Tracy followed him there two minutes later.
Despite still leading, 33-31 with 1:37 left in the third, Trillo, and the Kangaroos couldn’t get anything going on offense.
“We were hoping to survive the last two minutes of the quarter with Johnson and Tracy out,” Fowler said.
With a minute left in the quarter, Coginchaug’s Conor Doyle hit a 3-pointer to give them the one point, 34-33 lead going into the final frame.
“We were trailing most of the game until that one-point lead,” Salva said.
Johnson and Tracy returned with the zone and there wasn’t anything the Blue Devils could do.
“I thought the effort was great, though we came up short,” Salva said.
Trillo finished with 19 points in the win and only one foul.
Terryville will take on No. 10 Bloomfield on Friday night at home, 7 p.m.
“We know they are athletic and will run up court a lot,” Fowler said. “We are going to try to play our game, over the last two games we’ve shown we can slow down and we are capable of playing up tempo.”
Playing in a game like this, was something the Kangaroos haven’t faced all season
“Coming from behind, playing with foul trouble this was good for us,” Fowler said.
Terryville 51 Coginchaug 41
At Terryville High School
Terryville 8 17 8 18-51
Coginchaug 12 8 14 6-41
Terryville (51): Tyler Trillo 6-4-19; Ian Schmidt 0-0-0; Shea Tracy 7-6-21; Taylor Donofrio 1-0-2; Jacob Johnson 2-3-7; Sean Huria 1-0-2; Jeff DuPaul 0-0-0; Zach Graham 0-0-0. Totals: 17-13-51.
Coginchaug (41): Devin Rodriguez 2-3-8; Jack Granger 1-0-2; Joshua Smith 1-0-2; Cameron Powers 4-0-9; Conor Doyle 3-2-10; Zach Terrill 3-1-7; Taylor Sapia 0-1-1; Alexander Markowski 1-0-2. Totals: 15-7-41.
3-point goals: T-Trillo 3; Tracy. C-Doyle 2; Rodrigue; Powers.
Records: Terryville 20-1 Coginchaug 12-10