Wednesday, March 12, 2014
By Gary Hawkins email@example.com
AUGUSTA — The play didn’t come off quite as planned, but the result was all that mattered Monday night in the Western Maine Class C quarterfinal between Madison and Hall-Dale.
JUMP FOR JOY: Madison players celebrate during their 50-48 win over Hall-Dale in a Western C quarterfinal game Monday at the Augusta Civic Center.
Staff photo by Andy Molloy
With time winding down, Madison senior Dylan Price saw an opening and drove to the basket to score what proved to be the game-winning hoop with 9.9 seconds left to play. Hall-Dale had one last shot to tie the game, but a driving layup by Mike Woods rolled off the rim as the buzzer sounded, giving Madison a 50-48 victory.
The win puts fourth-seeded Madison (13-7) into Thursday night’s semifinal against Boothbay while No. 5 Hall-Dale finishes at 10-9.
Madison trailed 48-44 with just over a minute to play but tied the game on a pair of throws from Dustin West and a layup Derek LeBlanc following a Hall-Dale turnover. A missed Hall-Dale shot set up the game-winning basket by Price.
“We spread it out so I could get some penetration and lucky enough I got into the middle and put it up,” Price said.
Price finished with a game-high 18 points and was the player Madison coach Mike Packard wanted with the ball.
“He’s a good penetrator and that was a good option for us,” Packard said. “We had a plan which he ran and that didn’t pan out for us and Dylan took it upon himself to get that penetration.”
Madison defeated Hall-Dale soundly during the regular season 54-31 but no one put much stock in that outcome.
“(Sam) Shepherd came back and we knew that would help and they didn’t have a good game last time at all,” Price said.
Shepherd, Hall-Dale’s 6-foot-6 senior center, missed a number of games at the end of the season after spraining his ankle. He didn’t start Monday but was a big factor in the game as he finished with 12 points, nine rebounds and two blocked shots. His tip-in at the first-quarter buzzer drew Hall-Dale into a 10-all tie and his layup near the end of the half put his team up 28-24.
Madison took the lead in the third quarter, thanks to a pair of 3s by Price and one apiece by LeBlanc and Austin Kane, who rebroke a bone in his right shooting hand in a scrimmage last week. Kane finished with eight points, including a pair of 3-pointers.
“It’s affecting his ballhandling some,” Packard said. “It didn’t seem to affect his shooting tonight.”
Madison led 42-36 going into the fourth quarter but Hall-Dale had one comeback left. Harry Cheung hit a foul-line jumper to start a 10-0 run that included four points from Shepherd on a steal and a tip-in and four from sophomore Brian Allen on a pair of free throws and a jumper in the lane.
Madison senior Steven Lawrence played a strong game, finishing with seven rebounds, including the final shot from Woods, 10 points and three blocked shots. Hall-Dale got a nice lift off the bench from senior Cheung who scored eight points, grabbed four rebounds and had a key steal with 40 seconds left to play.
Gary Hawkins — 621-5638