Taconic Boys Share Ball, Shoot 3s, Get Win

By Stephen DravisiBerkshires.com Sports
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. -- A lot of numbers pop out of the box score of Tuesday's 80-64 Taconic boys basketball win.
The 80 points was the most scored against a Hoosac team in nearly two years.
Matt Stracuzzi and Izaiya Mestre combined for 11 3-pointers and 47 points.
Hoosac senior Jameson Coughlan scored a game-high 30 to come within two of a thousand points for his high school career.
But perhaps the biggest stat was this: more than half of Taconic's field goals came off assists, and five different players had at least an assist apiece.
"I was just in a groove, and my teammates were finding me," Stracuzzi said to explain his 6 3s. "They did a very good job giving me the ball."
Treyvon Ringgold, who scored 19 and grabbed nine rebounds, said that getting people the ball is just what Taconic does.
"Mostly all of our offense came off assists and sharing the ball," Ringgold said. "We don't really like to play selfish ball. One guy gets on a roll, and we try to keep him on that roll.
"That's more of our forte: the assist kind of game."
Taconic (13-2) trailed by eight midway through the third when Coughlan put back an offensive rebound to make it 47-39.
But Stracuzzi hit 3s on back-to-back trips on assists from Deonte Sandifer and Mestre to spark a 22-7 run that went into the fourth quarter. Ringgold capped the run with a bucket in the post to give Taconic a 61-54 lead.
Hoosac (10-6) did not give up. It rallied back to within three points when Keagan McGrath hit a pair of free throws with 5 minutes, 9 seconds left to make it 61-58.
But Mestre and Stracuzzi answered with 3s on back-to-back trips, and Taconic shot 7-for-8 from the foul line down the stretch to pull away.
Hoosac coach Bill Robinson said his team will have to learn a lesson from Tuesday and do better the next time around when Taconic visits Cheshire on Feb. 19.
"They're tough, they're a good team," Robinson said. "They've got some speed. Ringgold gives them a presence inside. And they've got shooters.
"Coach [Bill Heaphy] made a nice move putting Stracuzzi in the game. It went shooter, shooter and Mestre, and we were trying to balance who on who, and worked for a little bit but we lost focus.
"We prepared for what we wanted to do, but I didn't know those two guys could shoot like that, let's put it that way."
Hoosac Valley goes to Wahconah on Friday night, when Taconic hosts Pittsfield.
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