GORHAM — Biddeford showed a glimpse of taking a big step away from last year’s 0-18 record on Wednesday night, but it was just a glimpse. The Tigers found out over the course of their SMAA boys basketball game against host Gorham that they still have a ways to go.

Biddeford led midway through the first quarter, but a Rams run ended any hope of an early-season upset bid, and Gorham ran away with a 75-34 victory at Dean Evans Gymnasium.

The game started out well for Biddeford (0-2), as Patrick Pearl stole the ball on Gorham’s opening possession and went the other way for a layup while getting fouled, giving the Tigers a quick 3-0 lead.

Billy Ruby answered with four-consecutive points for Gorham (2-2), but Biddeford scored four of its own to take back the lead.

Gorham head coach subbed out all five of his starters just 3:09 into the game, not liking what he saw from his first unit, but a baseline jumper by Biddeford’s Corie Ramos upped the Tigers’ lead to 9-4 11 seconds later.

“That was nice. That is a nice improvement from last year. Usually on the road, we were usually down early right at the start,” said Biddeford head coach Justin Tardif. “So at least we were into the game, and gave us a chance in the first quarter.”

That 9-4 lead proved to be the high point of the game for Biddeford, as Gorham ran off 15 straight points into the second quarter, including scoring the last 11 points of the first quarter to take a 15-9 lead.

“Anybody can play with anybody for four minutes. The question is, can you play with someone for 32 minutes, and we weren’t there for tonight,” said Tardif.

The run began with a boost from one of Gorham’s bench players, as reserve forward Logan Drouin scored four straight points to cut the Biddeford lead to 9-8. A pair of made free throws by Cam Smith ”“ another backup ”“ made it 10-9 and the Rams never looked back.

Austin Dutremble finally stopped Gorham’s run with a layup 1:30 into the second quarter, but by then it was a 19-9 deficit.

“Their physical presence inside and their pressure defense really hurt us,” said Tardif. “We had a tough time making simple, just entry-level passes into our offense; they were contesting everything.”

Ruby made sure the Tigers didn’t crawl back into the game, as he scored 10 of his 17 points in the second quarter, and the Rams went into the locker room with a 41-16 halftime lead.

Ruby scored just three points after the intermission, but the Rams’ offense didn’t miss a beat, as Tyler Bernaiche scored 14 of his 17 points after the break ”“ including four 3-pointers.

The Rams finished with four players in double figures, led by Ruby and Bernaiche’s game-high 17, while Nick Thibeault and Drouin each chipped in with 10. The Rams were without one of their best players in junior center Sam Kilborn.

Pearl led the Tigers with 15 points, but had just four combined across the second and third quarters. Dutremble finished with 12, including 10 in the second half. The rest of the Biddeford offense combined to score just seven points.

“You got to shoot well, especially if you’re not a tall team,” said Tardif. “It was really there half-court defense that really swung that game.”

The Tigers will look to get their first win of the year on Friday night, as they travel to take on 0-1 Massabesic.

— Sports Staff Writer Wil Kramlich can be contacted at 282-1535, ext. 323 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @WilTalkSports.



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