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Falcon boys rally to edge Andies
RUMFORD -- A degree of confidence can go a long way and the Mountain Valley boys' basketball team needed every ounce down the stretch at Puiia Gymnasium.
Izaak Mills scored a game-high 26 points, including six three points, but Zach Radcliffe made the biggest splash as the Falcons rallied for a 49-46 win against Livermore Falls. Class B Mountain Valley (15-0) triumphed 66-35 at Livermore Falls last month and the rematch proved to be extra exciting. Livermore Falls had taken a 40-31 lead and then the Falcons turned up the pressure, which had been absent.
“We just needed to get after it,” said Mills, who scored 10 points in the fourth quarter. “They had been
A basket by Isaac Roberts pulled MV back to trail 44-40 and then the defense forced two backcourt turnovers. Mills buried back-to-back treys, the latter put the Falcons ahead for good with 1:47 left. It finalized a 15-4 run.
“This was good for the team to experience this type of situation,” said MV coach Rick White. “We persevered and that’s the way we’re going right now. (LF coach) Travis (Magnusson) deserves a lot of credit for having a good game plan.”
Livermore Falls relied on Mike Castonguay (11 points), Mike Anctil (10 points) and Mike Armstrong (16 points, 15 rebounds). The Andies rely on a strong inside game and dominated the boards.
The Falcons called time and milked the clock until Cam Kaubris was fouled and made one of two free throws with 58 seconds left. Kaubris (sprained ankle), who had sat out until late in third quarter, scored seven.
"Livermore was more physical than us,” said Roberts. "We needed to step it up more and Zach’s rebound was big.”
The 5-7 Radcliffe grabbed a rebound and was mauled underneath. He calmly sank two free throws with seven seconds left and the Andies double dribbled before they could get a shot off.
“We came out in the second half and focused more on our defense,” said Radcliffe, referring to Livermore's 16 turnovers in final 16 minutes. “Eventually our defense created our offense.”
MV shot 23 percent (15 for 62), made 10 of 19 from the charity stripe and turned the ball over six times through three quarters.
The Falcons have traditionally started fast and drained six three pointers (four by Izaak Mills, Jacob Theriault and Roberts) in the first quarter. But they hit a wall, missed 29 of 32 shots, and trailed 37-30 after three quarters.