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Eagle hoop boys bow out in semis



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David Sykie looks to intercept a pass during Gilford’s semifinal with Prospect Mountain. Joshua Spaulding. (click for larger version)
January 02, 2012
GILFORD – A buzzer-beater at the end of the third quarter proved to be a backbreaker for the Gilford High School boys' basketball team on Dec. 28, as the Golden Eagles couldn't come back in the fourth quarter of a 49-38 loss to Prospect Mountain in the semifinals of the Lakes Region Holiday Basketball Tournament.

It was Gilford's second loss to PM in a week span, as the Timberwolves were 63-47 winners on Dec. 20. That game saw the Eagles storm out to a 20-8 lead after one quarter before ultimately falling.

Patrick Scannell's runner in the lane cut PM's lead to 36-32 as the final seconds ticked away in the third quarter, and it appeared as though Gilford would enter the fourth with momentum and a chance to pull off the upset. But PM point guard Zack Drouin dribbled the ball the length of the floor with six seconds on the clock, getting to the three-point line and tossing up a shot as time expired. The three ball gave the T-Wolves a 39-32 lead, and seemingly sucked the life out of the Golden Eagles the rest of the way.

Gilford managed just six points in the fourth quarter, as PM scored nine of its 10 points in the period from the foul line to pull off the 49-38 victory.

Prospect led from the beginning, as the squad held a 14-6 advantage after the first quarter. Gilford senior guard Connor Veazey did his best to cut into that deficit in the second quarter, as the outside shooting specialist drilled back-to-back threes to make it 18-13. It was 20-16 after a David Sykie three-point play, but PM closed out the half on an 8-0 run to take a 28-16 lead at the break.

Veazey started the third quarter with another three, and his fifth of the night made it 30-24 PM. A Ronny Bean triple made it 34-28 Prospect midway through the third, and free throws from Sykie and the Scannell runner gave Gilford hope before Drouin's buzzer-beater.

Veazey led Gilford with 15 points, all coming from downtown, while Sykie played well in the post with eight points. Derrick DuBois had five points while Ben Morris chipped in three in the loss.

The semifinal appearance was the second straight for Gilford, which beat Belmont in the first round of last year's tournament before falling to Prospect in the semis.

Pat Cassidy led the T-Wolves with 15 points, including 11 in the first half, while Drouin added 13.

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