WISCASSET’S CALEB BRYANT (24, top photo) goes hard to the basket while being defended by Waynflete’s Abshir Horor (12) and Mohammed Suja (21) during the Western Maine Class C boys high school basketball quarterfinals at the Augusta Civic Center on Monday. In the right photo, Wolverines guard Jordan Jones brings the ball up the court in front of Waynflete’s Max Belleau (3). The Flyers won 59-48.

WISCASSET’S CALEB BRYANT (24, top photo) goes hard to the basket while being defended by Waynflete’s Abshir Horor (12) and Mohammed Suja (21) during the Western Maine Class C boys high school basketball quarterfinals at the Augusta Civic Center on Monday. In the right photo, Wolverines guard Jordan Jones brings the ball up the court in front of Waynflete’s Max Belleau (3). The Flyers won 59-48.

AUGUSTA — One year ago today, the Wiscasset High School boys basketball team battled for six periods in a double overtime Western Maine Class C quarterfinal 50- 48 loss to Waynflete at the Augusta Civic Center.

 

 

On Monday in the quarterfinal rematch, the Wolverines made a run in the fourth quarter that had many courtside fans talking about yet another long game.

But, this time around the Flyers had an answer to Wiscasset’s 15-3 rally, getting two big baskets late in regulation from Paul Runyambo in a 59-48 victory, ending Wolverines coach Dana Lawrence’s first year at the helm.

Despite the loss, Lawrence was proud of his team after Wiscasset rallied from a 49-33 deficit entering the fourth quarter, closing to 52-48 with 1:11 remaining. In fact, until Runyambo went hard to the basket and scored while being fouled, the Flyers had failed to produce a field goal in the final frame.

“There is no quit in these guys,” said Lawrence after his seventh-seeded team finished 11-9. “These kids worked their butts off and rebounded with them all night. I was pleased with the effort allaround tonight.”

With the win, second-seeded Waynflete (15-3) advances to face No. 6 Old Orchard Beach, a 78-48 upset winner over No. 3 Boothbay, on Thursday at 7 p.m.

The rally

Flyers coach Rich Henry had to reinsert his starters with four minutes left as the Wolverines began making a lot of noise.

“When they started coming back, I thought ‘here we go again.’ I try to stress to these guys if you spread the floor, you can take advantage of our athleticism. We bunched up in the fourth quarter, and you can’t do that,” said Henry. “Good teams make runs, and Wiscasset is a good team.”

Austin Haskell’s short jumper got Wiscasset going in the fourth quarter. After a Max Belleau free throw for Waynflete, the Wolverines went on an 8- 0 run, capped by a short jumper by Jordan Jones, to close to 50-43.

A free throw by the Flyers made it an eight-point game, but Jones nailed his fifth 3-pointer and Caleb Bryant sank both ends of a 1-and-1 as Wiscasset clawed its way to within four points.

Runyambo grabbed a pass from Jack Cutler and drove to the basket. He managed to get the shot off while being hit in the face, with the ball dropping through the cylinder with 54 seconds remaining.

Two missed Wiscasset shots and a pair of turnovers were followed by another Runyambo hoop and harm with 34 ticks remaining. This time, Runyambo made the free throw to complete the three-point play, with Chris Burke sinking two free throws moments later to complete Waynflete’s 59-48 victory.

“What hurt us is the same thing that hurt us all season … missed bunnies, and we had two tough turnovers there at the end,” said Lawrence, who praised his team, especially seniors Cory Hodgdon, James Andretta, Ben Sutter, Jones, Devin Grover, Bryant and Jason Weatherbee. “It took some time, four or five games, for us to figure things out, but they worked hard all year long and I couldn’t be more proud of them.”

Grover had 13 points and Weatherbee 10 to join Jones in double figures for Wiscasset.

Waynflete jumped out to an 11-4 lead two minutes into the game behind the play of Cutler, who scored nine of his 10 points in the frame as the Flyers finished the opening eight minutes with a 20-13 lead. Jones kept the Wolverines in it by nailing two treys for six points.

Wiscasset hung around in the second quarter, closing to 20-16 on a putback by Weatherbee. But, a quick 7-1 Waynflete spurt upped the advantage to 10 points, 27-17, with the Flyers holding a 32-24 edge at the half. Belleau matched Cutler with nine first-half points, while Jones had nine and Grover seven for Wiscasset.

Belleau paced Waynflete with 16 points, while Serge Nyirikamba added 13 and Runyambo 11. The Flyers shot 46 percent (23 of 49) from the field, but struggled to a seven-of-16 performance at the foul line. Cutler and Runyambo each had six rebounds as Waynflete held a 31-23 edge on the boards.

Wiscasset shot 30 percent (16 of 53) from the floor and finished 11 of 19 at the charity stripe. The Wolverines forced 20 Waynflete turnovers, led by three steals each from Jones and Grover. Haskell dished out five assists.

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