NORTH ADAMS, Mass. – The Maynard boys basketball team Sunday found openings in the middle of Drury’s defense and a path to the Division 5 State Semi-Finals.
Kyle Monahan scored 25 points, and center Abraao Alencar added 20 as the Tigers advanced with a 72-60 win in Bucky Bullett Gymnasium.
“They got into our lane,” Drury coach Jack Racette said. “They were good interior passers, and they got a lot of easy baskets. That’s the bottom line. … They got a lot of easy baskets. Once you start making those, start making a couple of 3s, you’re looking at what we ended up with.
“I don’t know how many [Alencar] got, but they were all inside of three feet. We had defenses where we just left him open from 15, and he didn’t shoot it. He knew his role, he did his job, he stayed right next to the basket, and when they penetrated, he was ready to catch and finish.”
Alencar set the tone early with a pair of baskets in the post in the opening moments to give the sixth-seeded Tigers a 4-0 lead. He finished the first half with eight points, but No. 3 Drury had a 16-15 lead thanks to a balanced attack that included scoring from six different players.
Drury senior Ben Moulton scored eight of his 14 in the second quarter, which ended with Drury turnover and Monahan lay-up in transition at the buzzer to give the visitors a 34-30 lead in the locker room.
Drury committed 12 turnovers in the first half and gave the ball away six more times in the third quarter.
One of those turnovers led to a Connor Capone score with 3 minutes, 8 seconds left in the third to give Maynard a 38-36 lead.
It was an 11-point margin heading into the fourth, but Drury made a late push with a 6-0 spurt midway through the quarter.
First, Amont David (six points, nine boards) got fouled putting back an offensive rebound. He missed his free throw, but Louis Guillotte grabbed the rebound and converted to make it a four-point trip.
The next time down, David had another putback to get the Blue Devils within nine at 59-50.
But Maynard scored the next six points to extend its lead to 64-50 with 2:40 on the clock, and the margin never got back to single digits.
Guillotte led the Blue Devils with 15 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. Senior Tim Brazeau had 10 points, 10 rebounds and five blocks.
Drury finishes the season at 18-6 and one win away from its third straight trip to the state semi-finals, not bad for a team that played only a handful of games last winter due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We’re a quality team,” Racette said. “I think not playing last year really hurt this team. They were all juniors last year. They all would have played. We weren’t together.
“These guys have nothing to hang their heads about. … But I think missing that whole year, really finding some identity of where we need to get the ball in games like this … We just were not battle-tested enough times.”