Friday, December 6, 2013
By Tom Chard email@example.com
PORTLAND — Third-ranked Yarmouth took advantage of No. 2 Spruce Mountain's tournament jitters to jump out to a 15-0 lead en route to a easy 60-30 win Thursday night in a Western Class B boys' basketball semifinal at the Cumberland County Civic Center.
Sam Torres of Yarmouth heads to the basket against James Barker of Spruce Mountain during Yarmouth’s 60-30 victory.
John Ewing/Staff Photographer
Yarmouth's pressure defense flustered Spruce Mountain, which committed turnover after turnover in an ugly first quarter.
"I thought Spruce Mountain might be a little off at the start," said Yarmouth Coach Adam Smith. "I was hoping for a fast start, but I didn't think we would get anything like this."
Yarmouth (16-4) will play No. 1 Falmouth (20-0) for the regional title at 3:45 p.m. Saturday. It will be the Clippers' second straight regional final. A year ago, they lost to Cape Elizabeth.
Yarmouth lost twice to Falmouth during the regular season, by four points and by three points in overtime.
"Falmouth is a great team," said Yarmouth standout Josh Britten. "We're looking forward to it."
This game was virtually over in the first four minutes. Yarmouth's pressure defense forced early Phoenix turnovers, which the Clippers converted. Sam Torres and Britten each had five points during the opening 15-0 run.
"We always look to come out flying with our defense," said Britten. "Our pressure defense got them down. After that, Spruce Mountain played all right."
After handling Wells in the quarterfinals at the Portland Expo, the Phoenix (18-2) found themselves in a different environment and against a team that has plenty of experience over the last two years playing at the Civic Center.
Spruce Mountain didn't score its first basket, a layup by Jacob Bessey, until 1:47 was left in the first quarter. The Phoenix scored the last six points of the quarter, but Yarmouth got the first eight of the second quarter to make it 23-6.
Torres had two baskets in the run to open the second. David Murphy and Christian Henry had the others.
Torres led Yarmouth with 18 points, the majority of his baskets coming on breakaways.
"I thought Sam got down the floor very well," said Smith. "He really gave us a boost early in the game, and later."
Britten finished with 15 points despite sitting out a big portion of the second quarter in foul trouble. He fouled out with 6:10 left.
"It was a very aggressive game," said Britten.Staff Writer Tom Chard can be contacted at 791-6419 or at: