February 17

Western Class A boys’ basketball: Bonny Eagle bumps Sanford

Dustin Cole scores 33 points to pace the Scots to a 66-49 quarterfinal victory.

By Greg Reid
Special to the Press Herald

This time, it was senior guard Nick Dubay’s turn. About a minute into the second quarter, Dubay hit a 3-pointer from the corner to pull Bonny Eagle within one of Sanford, 13-12.

click image to enlarge

Bonny Eagle’s Nathan Alexander pulls in a rebound in traffic during Bonny Eagle’s 66-49 win Monday morning in a Western Class A boys’ basketball quarterfinal at the Portland Expo.

John Ewing/Staff Photographer

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Dustin Cole goes up for a layup against Sanford’s Joshua Schroder, left, and Evyn Nolette during Bonny Eagle’s 66-49 win Monday morning in a Western Class A boys’ basketball quarterfinal at the Portland Expo. Cole scored 33 points to help the Scots advance to the semifinals against Falmouth.

John Ewing/Staff Photographer

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“With this group, it seems one guy can really just take the lid off,” Bonny Eagle Coach Phil Bourassa said. “And when it happens, things happen quickly.”

And, in Bonny Eagle’s case, things can happen relentlessly. Dubay’s shot sparked the Scots to a 21-5 run, including 17 points from Dustin Cole, and third-seeded Bonny Eagle pulled away for a 66-49 victory in a Western Class A boys’ basketball quarterfinal Monday morning at the Portland Expo.

Bonny Eagle (18-1) advances to a regional semifinal Wednesday night at the Cumberland County Civic Center against No. 2 Falmouth (18-1). The Yachtsmen advanced with a 56-48 quarterfinal win over No. 7 Cheverus.

“We expected a slow start, but once we came out of it we played well,” said Cole, who finished with 32 points, including four 3-pointers. “Once we started getting shots, running the floor and getting rebounds, we got it going.”

The Scots had gone nine days without a game, including a storm delay that pushed their 9 p.m. Saturday night start to 10 a.m. Monday. So much for the regular routine in which teens tend to thrive.

“We got them to the gym at 7 for a shoot-around, fed them a good breakfast, got them on the bus and hoped for the best,” Bourassa said.

In the early going, the Scots were left hoping for more. A steady succession of fouls by both teams disrupted the game’s rhythm, with Bonny Eagle scoring just two of its nine first-quarter points from the field. Meanwhile, Sanford (13-6) was finding big man John Morgan along the baseline, where he scored six of the Spartans’ 11 first-quarter points.

The Scots’ frenetic defense, led by Jon Woods (12 points, 10 rebounds), Ben Malloy (10 rebounds) and Zach Dubiel held the Spartans in check. Morgan finished with 13 points to lead Sanford. Evyn Nolette added 12 and Josh Schroder had 10.

“(Woods) is a guy who has played guard most of his life, and we’re asking him to defend bigs, and he’s doing a great job with that,” Bourassa said. “Morgan’s a great player, we knew we had to stop (Morgan), and he still got some of his. But great players do that.”

Foul trouble in the second quarter limited what Sanford could do to counter the Scots’ surge. The teams played evenly in the second half, with Sanford outscoring the Scots 14-12 in the third quarter to cut the lead to 47-34. But by then the damage had been done.

“Now it’s a matter of watching who we’ll play next,” Cole said, “and doing what we do.”

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