Herrick, Monument Boys Win at Wahconah
DALTON, Mass. — Graham Herrick scored 18 points including an red hot first quarter with 11 Monday to lead the Monument Mountain boys basketball team to a 46-38 win over Wahconah.
Noah Helmke pitched in with eight of his own, including 7-for-9 shooting from the free throw line.
Two teams came into to the game undefeated, and Monument (7-0) stayed that way after a classic Berkshire County affair. It was a low-scoring game filled with plenty of good defense as both teams struggled to get going early on. Herrick was able to open things up for Monument after the slow start -- doing not only the scoring, but all the grunt work as well.
“You know what you are going to get with him [Herrick],” Monument Mountain coach Mike Saporito said. "He goes about his business in a very blue collar way, he’s very humble, He shows up to play and we trust him. He really sets the tone for us and he’s never afraid to get on the ground, he battles for rebounds and always plays the other teams best player.”
Monument finished the first quarter up 13-6.
It continued to control the tempo of the game in the second quarter, really making Wahconah (5-1) work for every basket. It wasn’t until the last play of the half that Wahconah looked like it may be able to take some momentum and turn things around. Tim Clayton hit a half court buzzer beater to bring the Warriors within 10 points at the break.
Tom O’Connor had 13 points for Wahconah, and Tom Burris added 11.
It was the third quarter when Wahconah finally started to look like they were getting things done on the offensive end. Shots started to fall and the defense picked up. Monument was able to weather the storm and keep a sizable lead, making it hard for Wahconah get back in the game.
In the fourth quarter, Monument started to slow down a little bit and left a number of points at the line, which was a concern for Saporito.
“We didn’t hit our free throws and that’s something that concerns me going forward, especially in the fourth quarter,” he said. “All in all it was enough to get out of Dalton with a road win.”
Monument will head to North Adams on Friday night to play the Blue Devils, who have been on a roll after their opening game lost.
“We have Drury on Friday, which is not an easy trip to take and we have to get out of there with a win,” Saporito said. "We know the types of things Drury likes to do with his pressure, but we will be ready and hopefully we execute.”
Wahconah will play Hopkins Academy in the Hoophall Classic in Springfield on Thursday.