Photo caption: Alex Givins-Perry (#3) had 21 points and 10 rebounds for the Indians. Patriot staff photo.
by Steev Riccardo
OXFORD – The Bartlett Indians took control early and played solid two-way basketball and stifled the Oxford Pirates 90-73 in Southern Worcester County League action on Friday night in front of huge crowd in Oxford.
Sophomore Jacob Mailloux had a monster game for the Indians with 14 points and a career high 20 rebounds. Not to be outdone, junior Alex Givins-Perry had 21 points and 10 rebounds, while senior co-captain Akeem Belnavis led all scorers with 26 points.
The Indians got off to a quick start and opened a 21-11 lead after one quarter led by Belnavis’ 8 points.
The Pirates tried to battle back in the second quarter but the Indians had a strong hold on the boards and despite 7 points from Pirates junior Liam Pickett took a 43-27 lead at the half.
The third quarter was fast and furious, at times sloppy, as each team scored 25 points, which favored the Indians, who maintained a safe 68-52 lead heading into the final quarter.
Tyler Barrie hit a pair of three-point shots and Donny Freeland and Pickett also connected on long-range jumpers but the closest the Pirates could get was 73-61 as the Indians met every run with a run and were getting just about every rebound and loose ball.
“We tried to take away their go-to players Freeland and (Mike)James and I thought our runners did a good job on them,” said Indians coach Tony Paranto.
“In the second half some of their shooters got hot so it was good to have a big lead in the first half so we were able to withstand their runs. The second half was ugly, sloppy play by both teams, we made free throws when it counted even though we missed 12 of them.”
Mailloux and Givins-Perry and even sophomore Neil Flanigan, who played some solid minutes off the bench, were too much for the undersized Pirates inside and the Indians dominated the rebounding facet of the game.
“Alex (Givins-Perry) with his strength and his speed and Mailloux with his length, we have that tandem with those two underneath the boards. They do a good job, they are very active,” said Paranto.
The Bartlett win, which helped them to improve to 4-1, avenged a 48-38 loss a year ago in which the Pirates defense was hard to penetrate. This time around things were much different as the match-ups favored the Indians and they took advantage of them throughout the contest.
Pickett led the 2-2 Pirates with 16 points, James had 15, Barrie had 14, and Freeland scored 12 in the loss.
The Bartlett jayvees won the preliminary 65-51. Jacob Simonis led the green with 15 points, while Justin Speights, Anthony Grzembski, and AJ Cadell all chipped in with 9 a piece.
Jake Parmenter led the Pirates with 18 and Shawn McCarthy added 16 points. Freshman James Sheehan had 9 and sophomore Dan Cassie finished with 8 points.