Boys Basketball

Westbrook 60

Scarborough 50

Westbrook was in the zone, and the zone gave Scarborough fits. The Blue Blazes defeated the Red Storm, 60-50, Tuesday at Alumni Gymnasium.

Using a zone defense, Westbrook doubled-up Scarborough in the first half, opening a 30-15 advantage.

“We’ve been struggling against zone so they obviously scouted us well,” Scarborough coach Matt Townsend said. “We’re just having trouble knocking down shots.”

Westbrook has won four of its last five games, positioning itself for a playoff berth with three regular-season games to play. Its only loss during the current stretch came to No. 2 Portland (14-1).

“This is when you want to be playing good basketball, towards the end.” said senior captain Travis Rand. “To me, our playoffs started tonight. Between Scarborough and us, it’s going to be neck-and-neck going into the playoffs.”

In the latest Heal Point Standings, Westbrook (6-9) was ranked 11th in Western Maine Class A, the final playoff spot. Scarborough (6-9) was ranked 10th.

“We’ve been knocking on the door all year,” Westbrook coach Mark Karter said. “It’s nice to finally get a quality win. It puts us in a position to control our own destiny down the stretch.”

The Blue Blazes still have work to do. Their next game is Friday at No. 7 Gorham (8-7) and four days later they host No. 4 Bonny Eagle (10-5). They play at home against 12th-ranked Windham (5-10), another team fighting for a playoff spot, in their final regular season game.

Scarborough will face Kennebunk (No. 8, 8-7), Biddeford (No. 15, 1-14) and Thornton Academy (No. 6, 10-5) in the final week of the regular season. Like Westbrook, two of their last three games are at home.

Against Scarborough, Westbrook opened its lead with a 10-0 run that extended from the first quarter into the second, then closed the half with a 7-0 spurt, the final two coming when Rand dished to freshman Dominic Borelli for a layup.

“The Borelli kid hurt us a lot,” Townsend said. “He wasn’t playing a lot for them at the beginning of the season, but he has stepped it up big time. He is a tough matchup.

“He was a big difference in the game.”

Borelli scored eight of his game-high 16 points in the second quarter.

“As the season has gone on I have gotten more comfortable and seen the floor more,” Borelli said.

“For a coach, he is a nightmare because he is a mismatch problem,” Rand said. “You saw today, if there is a smaller guy on him, he can post up; if there is bigger guy on him, he can step outside. When we have our three big guys on the floor we like to go to Dominic. He has opened things up for a lot of people.”

Shawn Coffill and Kyle Sanborn added 12 points each for the Blue Blazes.

Scarborough narrowed Westbrook’s margin in the second half, using a 6-0 run midway through the third quarter to cut the lead to seven. The run was highlighted by Jordan Hicks’ steal, which he followed up with a two-handed dunk.

Hicks led Scarborough with 14 points.

However, Westbrook knocked down nine of 10 free throws down the stretch, and Coffill sank a 3-pointer with just over a minute remaining as the Blue Blazes held on for the victory.

Westbrook’s season began with a last-second, 2-point loss to defending state champion Deering. They’ve lost by five to Kennebunk, four to Bonny Eagle and three to Windham. They stayed close against the league’s top two teams, Portland (59-51) and Cheverus (58-47).

“We were young,” Karter said. “We’ve been learning all year.”

Two weeks ago, when the record was 2-8, it was being said they were better than the record indicated.

“We knew that,” said Karter. “We have a little way to go, but hopefully we are here to stay.”

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