Friday, May 24, 2013
Doug Jones/staff photographer: Thursday, January, 15, 2008: Mick DiStasio at work in traffic.Deering hosts Cheverus Basketball.
Thursday night, unbeaten Cheverus gave an indication of what might be in store for the other so-called boys' basketball contenders in the Southern Maine Activities Association as it heads into the second half of the regular season.
Already having impressed with a 9-0 start, all the visiting Stags did against an eight-win Deering team was score 16 unanswered points in the third quarter and roll to a 63-35 victory.
Cheverus had a five-point lead when it started its run, which included seven straight points by Indiana Faithfull, who finished with a game-high 21.
Cheverus Coach Bob Brown said his team made a defensive adjustment at halftime and started screening better to give his shooters more room.
It worked. The Stags, the defending Class A state champions, outscored Deering 21-7 in the third quarter and held the Rams to 14 second-half points.
''We stepped up in the second half and started moving the ball better,'' said Faithfull, the point guard. ''It all comes down to our defense. We all get along well and no one cares who scores. We're right where we want to be but we know we can get better. We're heading into the tough part of our schedule. It should be fun.''
''Cheverus is the best team in the league,'' said Deering Coach Dan LeGage. ''They're the defending state champs with a lot of experience.
''They picked it up a notch in the second half and we're not ready for that. Cheverus executed its offense and we didn't. We're a young team and a young team is going to have its ups and downs.
''This is the crucial part of the season. If we want to be one of the better teams in the league, we're going to have to start playing better and be more consistent.''
Deering, down 21-12 after the first quarter, trailed just 28-21 at the half when Faithfull and Mick DiStasio, the two returning standouts from last season, didn't score in the second quarter.
''We played very well in the second half but it wasn't like I was displeased with the way we played in the first half,'' said Brown. ''Deering played very well. They were physical, they drove the lane and got their shots.''
Dennis Ross of Deering (8-3) hit the first basket of the second half to make it a five-point game, but that was the last time it was close.
Peter Foley scored to start the 16-point run for Cheverus. Faithful, fouled while shooting, hit two from the line and then scored two straight baskets, the second while being fouled. He made the foul shot. DiStasio then scored on a drive to make it 39-23.
Deering, normally an excellent 3-point shooting team, wasn't making anything from beyond the arc against Cheverus' pressure defense.
''In the first half we executed our offense a little,'' said LeGage. ''In the second half we didn't execute at all.''
DiStasio converted a three-point play and Faithfull hit two more from the line before Khadar Abbas ended Deering's drought with a basket.
Faithfull scored 12 points in the third quarter, including 8 of 9 from the foul line.
''(Faithfull) handled their pressure and got people involved in the offense,'' said Brown.
DiStasio added 15 points and Foley had 10.
Ross came off the Deering bench to score all of his team- high 10 points in the second half.
Staff Writer Tom Chard can be reached at 791-6419 or at: