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Cougars edged in MVC title double OT thriller
AUGUSTA -- The action was fast and furious, as the Dirigo and Boothbay boys' basketball teams battled through the Mountain Valley Conference championship game played in the Augusta Civic Center.
The Cougars' Spencer Ross buried a three pointer with 57 seconds left in double overtime. However, Boothbay made the second of two free throws with 34.6 seconds and held on for a thrilling 89-88 win.
Neither team would yield an inch as the score was tied or changed sides 30 times in the second half and the extra eight minutes. The biggest margin between the teams was when the Cougars led 13-6 early in the first quarter.
The rest of the time no lead was safe as the teams traded baskets and wits.
Dirigo was led by Cody St. Germain's career-high 44 points (17 field goals) and 15 rebounds. The junior dominated the paint along with Ben Holmes (14 points, 11 rebounds).
“Neither team played their best defense, for sure,” said Ross. “And it didn't help that both of us were making most of our shots, so we just kept going back and forth. Neither of us called any offensive set plays throughout most of the game, so it was almost a free for all on the offensive end, us running our motion offense and them running their flex.”
The tandem hooked up for a highlight when Holmes lofted the ball over 90 feet in the air that covered the entire length of the Civic Center floor. St. Germain caught the ball, dribbled left and his six-footer tied the score as the buzzer sounded.
“Everyone was pretty pumped up after Cody tied it at the end of the first OT,” said Ross. “It gave us a big momentum boost going into the second OT.”
Ross feels the ACC is the best place for shooting because of the depth perception.
In the second OT, the teams swapped baskets before St. Germain scored from inside. It was short lived because Anthony Dimauro (18 of his 28 points after halftime) made a conventional three-point play. Ross (12 points, four treys) tied the game at 88. Boothbay whittled time off the clock until Dirigo fouled with 12.7 seconds left. With 3.4 seconds left, Holmes heaved the ball to the top of the circle, but TJ Frost was unable to get a clean shot at the basket.
Dirigo was helped out front by Caleb Turner (12 points, five assists), Ross (eight assists) and Josh Turbide (six points). Ross had two treys in the first quarter and St. Germain scored nine straight points in the second quarter, but Boothbay led 39-36 at halftime.