By Steev Riccardo; Photos by Don Cote
The Shepherd Hill Rams put together a strong all-around performance and bounced the Clinton Gaels from the Large Schools Division of the Clark Tournament with a 58-46 win on Monday night.
The Rams will now advance to the semi-finals for a much-anticipated rematch with the #1 seed Quabbin Panthers, who cruised past Assabet 70-34, on Thursday night.
Senior guard Chris Patrinos, who played well all night, hit an early three-pointer and the Rams were on their way to a 20-11 first quarter lead.
Despite forcing the Gaels to the turn the ball over (12 times in the first half), the Rams were only able to convert a few times and couldn’t really open up the lead. Still, they were ahead 31-22 at half time and appeared to be a good position.
The teams played fairly evenly in the second half, but every time the Gaels try to get back in the game, the Rams countered with a big shot.
Senior forward Kyle McKissick, who finished with 13 points, made some key hoops down the stretch including a great tip-in from above the rim that drove the crowd into a frenzy.
Rams head coach Duane Corriveau felt like his team didn’t play nearly as well as they could have. “I didn’t feel that we were playing well enough, we stretched it out to15 a few times and then boom-boom, it’s back to nine.”
“I didn’t get the feeling that we were in control of the game throughout. What they did was they held the ball a lot against us and they ran a lot of stuff and they used up a lot of time and that helped and benefited us.”
Corriveau also felt that his team didn’t take advantage of some of the opportunities. “We turned them over a dozen times in the first half and I don’t think we converted very many, maybe two.”
The coach gave it to his team at half time and they responded, “We had a lot of turnovers in the first half and we went in the locker room and the coach yelled at us,” said McKissick. “We wanted to come out in the second half and turn it around and that’s what we did. We reduced our turnovers and scored more baskets.”
Patrinos finished with a team high 17 points and was encouraged by his team’s ability to play better in the second half. “We struggled a little bit with their defense and then we got sorted out and we seemed to do good after that.”
Corriveau liked seeing Patrinos score but was happier about his play on both ends and praised he and his teammates’ defense. “He (Patrinos) played great defensive tonight. We were worried about a couple of their guys playing the inside and they were pretty good. What we did tonight was collapse and stayed on the ball and we knocked a lot of balls loose.”
Matthew Rayla also had a strong game for the 14-6 Rams with eight points and nine rebounds in the win and was happy with “the way his team played together.”
After splitting with Quabbin in the regular season, all the marbles will be on the line Thursday night and it should be a real battle between two very good basketball teams.
Don Cote photo.
Don Cote photo.
Don Cote photo.
- Wednesday, 22 February 2012
- Posted in Categories: : Sports