December 7, 2011
Marathon boys get best of visiting Groton, 50-47
Battle tested in the soccer post-season, Marathon Central boys seem to be thriving in the close games to start the basketball season.
Jeff Contri made to free throws in the final minute to give the Olympians a 47-45 lead and Marathon went on to post a 50-47 Interscholastic Athletic Conference North Small School Division win over Groton at McDonald Gymnasium Tuesday night.
It is the first regular-season win for Marathon coach Jim Holland over the Olympians’ division rivals.
In other North Division boys’ action, Union Springs nipped Dryden 37-35, Whitney Point downed Lansing 51-47 and Moravia routed Southern Cayuga 81-44.
In girls’ action, Marathon was a 52-34 victor over Groton, Dryden edged Union Springs 38-34, Lansing downed Whitney point 48-30 and Southern Cayuga beat Moravia 42-36.
Marathon 50, Groton 47: “It was a very hard-fought game by both teams,” Holland said. “We made the shots and some big free throws down the stretch. The guys worked hard the entire game.
“Groton was excellent with the on-ball pressure,” he added. “We had trouble running the offense, but we did what we needed to win.”
“The better team won tonight,” Groton coach John Filzen said. “They seemed to be better connected, they rebounded better and they had better shot selection. Marathon played more as a team than we did.
“We did have 15 steals,” he added. “Factor those and other turnovers, we still converted only 10 percent of those chances. Kudos to marathon on a great win.”
After Contri’s free throws, Groton missed two charity tosses and the front end of a one-and-one before Anson Dann’s driving lay-up gave Marathon (2-0) a 49-45 lead with 25 second to play.
Keegan Donovan brought Groton to within 49-47, but Eric Barry made one-of-two free throws with 13 seconds left to give the Olympians a 50-47 cushion.
Groton (1-1) missed two chances in the final seconds to tie the game in the final seconds.
The two teams were tied 10-10 after the first quarter and the Olympians enjoyed a slim 25-23 advantage at halftime. The teams were again deadlocked at 39-39 after three quarters.
Austin Fox led the Olympians with 12 points and Eric Barry had a double-double with 11 points and 18 rebounds.
Donovan netted a game-high 17 points for Groton. Bryan Chaffee added 12 points to the Indians’ attack.
Groton will travel to Union Springs Friday night with a 4:30 JV start. Groton host host Whitney Point with a 5:30 JV tip-off.
Union Springs 37, Dryden 35: In a defensive-minded North Division contest, McKenzie Brady scored 14 points to lead Union Springs (2-0) to the two-point victory. Steve Hewitt hit a 3-pointer with 2.6 seconds left for the game-winner.
Dryden got one last chance, but the ball would bounce off the knee of one of the Purple Lions and go out-of-bounds.
“It’s unfortunate, but those things happen” Dryden coach Kim Brown said after his team’s season-opening win. “Credit the Hewitt kid with making a tough shot.”
Gage Ellis led Dryden with a team-high 14 points. Bryan Norman added nine points to the Purple Lions’ effort.
Dryden returns to action Friday. The Purple Lions will entertain Trumansburg.
IN GIRLS’ PLAY —
Marathon 52, Groton 34: The game wasn’t close, but a great individual battle was waged between Marathon’s Samantha Courtney and Groton’s Kylene Hall. This one-on-one match-up saw Courtney net 20 points while Hall was right there with a 19-point effort. The difference in the game was point guard Ellena Holl’s 17 points as Groton had no one to keep up with her.
“Holl ran the court well and helped Marathon spread the floor out,” Groton coach Jen Case said. “We just could not keep up with her.
“We did a little better job in the second half,” she added. “I was pleased with our effort tonight. It was much better than our first game.”
“We played all right,” Marathon coach Mike Reilly stated. “We do rely on Sam and Ellena. That was evident tonight.”
IN IAC SWIMMING —
Dryden 91, Southern Cayuga 56: Dryden won eight of the 12 events and coasted to the IAC victory. Jeff Sinnott and Matt Converse each won two individual events for the Purple Lions. The home claimed all three relay events.
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