Talk to anyone regarding the Class A South boys’ basketball tournament, and the teams first mentioned are York (can anyone beat the top-ranked Wildcats?), Kennebunk (Wow, they can play!) and Falmouth (no team is better prepared).

Somehow, everyone has forgotten that there’s a three-time defending state champion in the region.

And that’s all right with the Greely Rangers.

“I love that,” said senior guard Logan Bagshaw, who scored 20 points Saturday night in a 56-49 quarterfinal win over Leavitt at the Portland Expo. “I love that people are counting us out. It drives all of us, to work even harder, to prove them wrong.”

Bagshaw became the school’s all-time leading scorer Saturday. He now has 1,186 career points, breaking the previous record of 1,171 set by Austin Ganly. He broke the record with 6:20 left in the second quarter, taking a lob pass from Drew Lawrence and scoring inside.

“I’ve got to thank everyone who has helped me through these four years,” he said. “I owe a lot of credit to everyone I played with. It’s an awesome milestone.”

Then he added, “But I’m not really focused on it right now because we have a huge game coming up.”

The Rangers (15-4) will take on top-seeded York (19-0) at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday. York has beaten Greely twice this season, 63-51 and 62-46.

Bagshaw knows the challenge ahead. But he’s confident for one reason.

“Our defense,” he said. “When we’re working hard, and working hard on defense, there aren’t many teams who can score on us … But it takes 110 percent effort.”

He is the focal point of everything the Rangers do. But on Saturday, the Rangers proved they are more than their 6-foot-3 leader.

They hit seven 3-pointers in the first half, only one by Bagshaw, who made 52 in the regular season. Nick Butler and Luke Gabloff made 3s as Greely took a 27-10 lead. Oh yeah, the Rangers also held Leavitt scoreless in the second quarter.

“Logan always finds me the ball, he finds Luke the ball, he finds people when they are hot,” said Butler. “He’s knows when people are hot and he’s a very unselfish player, and that helps us a lot.”

Bagshaw knows he can count on his teammates. “They were knocking down shots,” he said. “They were still setting screens for me, trying to get me open. But it turned out they were open. They were in the right spots, so I got it to them.

“That’s been happening all season. But tonight it was huge.”

The Rangers returned only two starters this season, but Butler, who finished with 15 points, said they have developed great chemistry over the season.

“We’ve developed amazing,” he said. “We all like each other. We’ve come a long way.”

Greely Coach Travis Seaver dismisses any added incentives from being overlooked. Yes, this team doesn’t have as much star power as some previous teams, but its focus hasn’t changed.

“We’ve had a lot more to focus on this year as far as team management and personnel,” said Seaver. ” But at the end of the day, what we try to do every year is worry about ourselves and play our best basketball for 32 minutes. I believe if we do that, we’ll be where we want to be at the end of the game.”

And they’re still alive, as is their title defense.

“I think we can compete with anyone,” said Seaver. “And I think our kids think that. And to me that’s dangerous.”

 

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