In a game that went down to the wire, an undersized West Roxbury team showed its fortitude at home in a grudge match against Charlestown.
Junior forward Timoy Jarret scored 8 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter including the go-ahead basket with less than a minute to go in the game, to lift the Raiders over the Townies, 56-50.
I just wanted this win,” said Jarret. “All week I’ve been thinking about playing this team today and I just wanted to go home with a win this week.”
Junior guard Markus Neale also closed well for the Raiders (3-3), scoring 10 of his 13 points in the fourth quarter.
It took a team effort to defeat a Charlestown team (2-4) that came out of the halftime carrying a rejuvenated swagger. With arguably their best player, junior Freddy Oliveira, on the bench for the entire third quarter, the Townies were still able to outscore the Raiders, 20-13.
“We were trying to make it a little bit more fast-paced by going to our press [to] make the game a little faster,” said Charlestown coach Edson Cardoso. “I thought we had some success but at the end, you have to defend the half-court and if they break the press, you have to defend at the other end.”
The defensive success Cardoso was talking about had a lot to do with the 6-foot-11-inch senior Jon Grullon cleaning up the mess for the Townies. However, West Roxbury coach Martin Somers thought that press is what played to his team's advantage.
“We’re smaller, we’re quicker. They have a lot more size so we actually wanted them to press us and there were key situations where they did put their 1-2-2 full court press on and it worked to our advantage,” said Somers.
The fourth quarter seemed like the momentum was going in Charlestown's favor with an opening alley-oop play, finished by senior forward Alijah Robinson.
Both teams traded baskets after the play, until a technical foul was called on Raiders' senior guard Deven Robinson for exchanging words with Townies' sophomore guard Kevin Williams.
If there was ever a play that got the Raiders fired up, it was that one. After the Townies didn’t connect on the free throw from the technical, West Roxbury went on a 12-2 run over a 5 1/2-minute span to put them up, 50-45.
“I just think we had a couple mental breakdowns, a couple transition layups we should of made [and] some missed box-outs,” said Cardoso.
Junior Taris Wilson, who led the way for the Townies with 21 points, still had one last run in him. With 1:40 to go Wilson hit a fast break layup and less than 40 seconds later hit a game-tying 3-pointer to silence the crowd.
However, just like they did throughout the game, West Roxbury responded. On a hard drive to the basket Jarret hit the go-ahead layup with 25 seconds to go. From there, Jarret and Neale hit all their free throws and the Raiders came away with the win.
“I’m really proud of my guys,” said Somers. “They’re tough guys, they fought through it [and] I give all the credit to the guys.”
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