SOUTH PARIS – After a winless fall season for their football and boys’ soccer teams, the Oxford Hills Vikings have been hungry for their first victory on the hardwood.

Friday night they showed how hungry, playing tenacious defense in the first half and then holding their own during a shoot-out in the third quarter for a 66-47 win over Lewiston.

“It’s good to get a win. Obviously, it’s been a tough fall for these athletes,” Oxford Hills coach Scott Graffam said. “Football and soccer didn’t fare very well, so it’s nice getting this win. Hopefully, we can build on this and go into Christmas break with a couple more.”

Lewiston (0-3) turned the ball over 33 times for the game. Some of those errors were unforced, but many of them were the result of constant harassment by Oxford Hills’ backcourt of Brandon Moffett and Ethan Sutton, who combined for 13 steals.

“The other team can’t let down for any amount of time because one of them is going to steal the ball from them,” Graffam said.

“We have good speed and talent on the team, defensively,” said Moffett, who led the Vikings with 16 points. “It’s nice to get the first win.”

The Blue Devils jumped out to an early lead, as Abdinassir Abdi (16 points) scored their first eight points. But his layup off a steal to make it 8-5 was Lewiston’s last field goal for nearly a full quarter.

Oxford Hills (1-2) closed the first quarter with a 10-1 run, then added a 14-0 run in the second quarter to take its largest lead at 34-11. Evan Gardner (nine points, nine rebounds) scored all five of Lewiston’s points in the quarter. Besides Gardner, the rest of the Blue Devils shot 0-for-12 from the field.

“This is one of our better defensive games, all around,” Sutton said.

“The only thing I want to say is they beat us. Mentally and physically, they beat us,” Lewiston coach Pat Blais said.

The Blue Devils found a hot hand in the third quarter, Jarrid Palmer (12 points), who drilled three 3-pointers as Lewiston made five of six from beyond the arc. But turnovers continued to plague the visitors, and set up some easy buckets that allowed the Vikings to keep pace. Lewiston never got closer than 14 points in the second half.

“We’ve been pressing pretty hard full court and today we kind of backed it off a little bit and played some halfcourt man, although with some pressure, and we turned them over a lot,” Graffam said. “That made a big difference because they could never get any flow going. That’s the best that we’ve played, obviously. It looks like we might have to be a man team.”

Tyler Gammon had 13 points, six rebounds and three steals for the Vikings.


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