Boys basketball edges Maine South

Team survives wild final minute for seventh consecutive victory


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Ryan shoots a three against Niles West on Feb. 7

Fueled by a big first half from senior shooting guard John Carragher and a pair of defensive stops in the final seconds, the varsity boys basketball team outlasted Maine South 43-42 in their season finale on Feb. 21, improving their overall record to 17-10 and their conference record to 6-4.

The Trevians’ offense looked unstoppable early as Carragher scored the game’s first six points, but Maine South was able to answer with a 13-0 run behind a three-point barrage and their aggressive defensive.

“They came out hot, and [those types of streaks happen]. We honed in on who were and weren’t their shooters, but we trusted that statistics would prove to be true and they wouldn’t make every shot,” said Carragher.

“[As far as rebounding goes] it was a mentality shift. We weren’t used to playing a team so much taller than us, and once we had that experience, we knew it had to be five guys working their butts off to get the rebound,” said Carragher.

Although the Trevians’ rebounding struggles helped put the team in a 25-22 halftime hole, they were able to counteract the Hawks’ size advantage by running a faster-paced offense in the second half, building a 33-30 lead by the end of the third quarter.

“In the second half we really pushed the ball in transition which led to some easy baskets for us,” said Ryan.

Ryan himself was the one who generated much of the team’s offense in the fourth quarter, hitting back-to-back jump shots with 5 minutes remaining.

While Ryan’s fourth quarter excellence helped the Trevians maintain their three-point lead into the final minute of the game, the Hawks cut the lead to 43-42 on a basket with 20 seconds left and received an opportunity to tie the game at the free throw line.

However, the Hawks missed their tying opportunity and were left with no choice but to foul, putting Ryan on the free throw line with a one-and-one attempt.

But Ryan failed to convert on his first free throw attempt and gave Maine South another opportunity to win the game.

The Hawks took the clock to under five seconds before they made their final drive to the basket, but senior forward Emmett Burnside blocked their layup attempt as time appeared to expire.
However, the officials conversed and determined that the ball landed out of bounds before time ran out, which gave Maine South an opportunity to inbound the ball with 0.7 seconds left.

But as the ball was thrown in bounds, junior guard Ian Burns deflected the pass away and prevented the Hawks from getting a final shot attempt, preserving the Trevians’ 43-42 lead as time officially expired.

This tight victory extends the Trevians’ winning streak to seven games after a tumultous 10-10 start, and they will begin preparation for their first round playoff matchup against Glenbrook North on Mar. 4.

“We’re all very experienced now, compared to at the beginning of the year,” said Carragher. “We’ve grown together; we’ve come together as a team through so many tight close games.”

As far as preparations for the Spartans go, Ryan said, “we’re going to focus on stopping their outside shooting and forcing them to put the ball on the floor.”

The Trevians have already beaten Glenbrook North twice, sweeping them in the season series. If they advance past the Spartans, they will have a chance to avenge their two regular season losses to Evanston in the following round.

Carragher said, “we’re going into expecting to win, just like we would in any other game. We have to be ready to fight, they won’t give up, they’re all good teams.”