THOMASTON >> Up one going into the fourth quarter the Spartans relied heavily on senior Alexander Daigle to help lead them past Northwestern, 55-49, and into the Berkshire League Tournament finals
“My teammates gave me the ball and I made my free throws,” said Daigle who scored 12 of his game-high 19 points in the final frame.
The pressure of the close game didn’t bother the Spartans.
“Towards the end of the game we were more confident,” said Daigle. “We practice this and are ready for these types of situations.”
“We hit our free-throws, we didn’t miss in the fourth quarter,” said Lewis Mills head coach, Todd Kozak.
The Highlanders were able to keep the game close, and they had chances to cut into the deficit or tie the game they made mistakes, but the Spartans press defense gave them issues.
“We turned it out a couple of times, I didn’t think it was that good tonight, the bounces just went their way tonight,” said Highlanders head coach Doug Sebach. “I thought our kids played hard and played well.”
Both teams played close the entire game, the final score was the biggest deficit between the teams at the end of any of the quarters.
After the first quarter the Spartans led 12-9, but the Highlanders took the second quarter tying it up at 22-22 each into the locker room.
Both Danny Kryzanski for Lewis Mills and Stephen McGrath for Northwestern led their respected teams in the first half.
Kryzanski scored nine points, all on 3-pointers and he knew he would have his chances to shoot.
“They played zone in their first round game and we figured they would against us,” said Kryzanski. “I found my spots and made my shots.”
McGrath led all-scorers with 10 points in the half.
“We were just moving the ball very well and he happened to be in the right place,” said Sebach.
The Highlanders came out and took the lead early in the third quarter, after McGrath hit two free-throws and Ricky Persechino hit a 3-pointer, 27-22.
Mills would take the back two minutes later on a Daigle layup and then a Kryzanski 3-pointer would give the Spartans a 35-31 lead which they would hold on to, despite last ditch efforts by the Highlanders.
Tuxbury would cut it to five, 51-46, on 3-pointer but that was the closet it would come.
“So happy, from last year when we had six wins to now be in the BL finals,” said Kozak.
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