Facing a 13 point deficit with just over four minutes remaining in the championship game of the Harry Lehmann Memorial Tournament Tuesday night at Bridgewater-Raynham High School, the Oliver Ames boys' basketball scraped and clawed it's way back.
But, despite 15 fourth quarter points from junior forward Nick Cidado, OA fell just short.
The Tigers fell to Brockton, 65-64 to settle for the runner-up spot in the tournament. They fell to 11-7 on the season.
"We were one roll of the ball from completing the whole task," OA coach Don Byron said. "I’m really proud of what they did in the last five or six minutes of the game."
The way things were going, OA was bound to score the next basket. The Tigers trailed 65-52 when senior point guard Andrew Reardon drilled a 3-pointer to put the game within 10 points, 65-55, at the four minute mark.
The Boxers didn't score in the final four minutes.
"We defended well. We played some offense, defense. We had kids come in just to play the defensive end and they stole us a couple of possessions," Byron said. "We had every opportunity. We were right there."
Cidado led the charge, scoring all of OA's fourth quarter points with the exception of Reardon's 3-pointer. He led all scorers with 24 points.
"He’s been doing that," Byron said. "He’s been closing out games really well."
Reardon finished the game with 18 points and sophomore guard Ryan Carney finished with 11. Big men Chris Duggan (JR) and Brendan Welch (SO) tacked on 6 and 5 points respectively.
Defensively, OA was handicapped when senior captain St. Claire Ryan was sidelined for most of the game with a heel injury. Thankfully for Byron, juniors Emanuel Simeon and Evan Coose and senior Richard Green stepped in.
"Richard Green’s minutes were extended as a result of [Ryan] getting hurt," Byron said. "He did a good job."
Brockton was led by senior guard Israel Thorpe, who finished the game with 14 points. Marcus Curry (SR), Jermal Murray (JR) and Ridge Francisque (SR) each added 8 points.
The Tigers are in the midst of a four-game gauntlet to close out the regular season. They'll host Foxborough Wednesday night and travel to Milford Thursday.
"We’ve got to play one at a time and worry about the next level of fatigue we have coming our way tomorrow," Byron said.