PORTLAND – All week long, Harvey Moynihan talked about “one and done” with his Gray-New Gloucester Patriots girls’ basketball team.

Monday night’s early exit from the Western B tournament at the Portland Expo wasn’t exactly what he had in mind.

Though the Patriots stuck with top-seeded Lake Region for a quarter, Gray-New Gloucester couldn’t sustain it in a 46-31 loss.

“We gave up too many second shots,” said Moynihan, whose team toppled Greely in a quarterfinal upset last year but couldn’t produce the same result against the Lakers. “All week long we talked about one and done. I think 24 points in the first half, 19 of them were on second shots after they already missed. That’s huge.”

Lake Region, which had beaten the Patriots 73-33 and 53-35 in the regular season, broke open a three-point lead after the opening quarter to complete the sweep. The Lakers second quarter began when the Patriots couldn’t control the boards on a Lake Region possession. The Patriots failed on two chances at defensive rebounds. Instead, the Lakers maintained possession and produced a Courtney McClean jumper off an inbounds pass that opened a 15-10 lead.

“We screamed about one and done all week,” said Moynihan. “You can’t give that team too many second shots, and we gave them too many second shots.”

Renee Nicholas led the Lakers (17-2) with 13 points while ZZ Leighton had 11. The Patriots (9-11) got 10 from Chelsey Durgin. Ana Danieli and Olivia Ryan added eight and seven points, respectively.

The Patriots’ formidable post game was neutralized for much of the game. With little success from the outside, G-NG could not find means to solve the clamp Lake Region had on its inside game. Between struggling in the halfcourt offense and nearly 30 turnovers overall, the Patriots had a hard time keeping pace.

“We’re a very small team,” said Leighton. “We only have two or three big players. We work a lot on our post defense and rotating to help side. It was a real team effort to shut down the inside and try to contain their post game.”

Though Lake Region couldn’t get its outside shots to drop until the second half, the Lakers mixed its fast break with a patient halfcourt to build the lead. Lake Region also shot 10-13 from the foul line in the first half.

“We’re patient,” said Leighton. “We want to try to take care of the basketball. That’s our main objective, to take care of the basketball and look for the open shot. We don’t want to force anything. If we take care of the basketball, eventually open shots are going to come.”

The Patriots were only down 13-10 after the first quarter. That was only because the Lakers managed a 5-2 spurt to finish the quarter.

In the second, G-NG had eight turnovers and hit just one of its first 12 shots. Lake Region’s defense frustrated the Patriots. Even when G-NG got the ball into the post, the shots didn’t drop.

“We missed too many layups,” said Moynihan. “It’s a fine line with them. There’s not a great margin for error with them. The pressure is intense. If you handle the pressure and get them into a halfcourt game, you’ve got to make every shot and every possession count.”

Instead, the Lakers used its speed and quickness to turn turnovers into points and holes in the G-NG defense into baskets during an 11-4 second quarter.

“We look in every game to control the tempo,” said Leighton. “That’s probably our biggest strength. We like to get the game running up and down the floor.”

After McClean’s jumper and free throws by Nicholas, G-NG got a field goal from Danieli. The Lakers answered with seven straight. Erica Webb and Leighton converted steals into easy baskets and free throws by Kayla Nowell and Abby Hancock built a 24-12 lead before Ryan scored the Patriots’ second field goal of the quarter at the buzzer.

Lake Region had the lead up to 34-17 on a 3-pointer by Leighton in the third. Six straight points by the Patriots made it 34-23 early in the fourth, but the Lakers ran off six straight to nix that rally.


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.