Sports

Ponies come back to top John Bapst on Senior Night

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DOVER-FOXCROFT — With 3:21 remaining in the fourth quarter, Foxcroft Academy trailed visiting John Bapst Memorial High School of Bangor 73-68 in a Jan. 29 Class B North/Big East Conference boys basketball game. From there the Ponies went on a 10-0 run to close out the contest on Senior Night for players Jair Garcia, Jeremy Richard, Hyatt Smith, and Matt Spooner and win 78-73 as the team helped solidify its spot for the postseason later in the month. After the contest Foxcroft stood in ninth place in the Heal Point standings with two road games to go.

The 78 points are a 2018-19 high for the Ponies, surpassing the previous mark of 72, and also are the most the Crusaders have given up this season.

Foxcroft improved to 7-9 with the win and avenged a 67-58 loss at John Bapst in the season-opener on Dec. 8. That victory helped the Crusaders start with a record 3-1, but since then the team has lost 11 in a row including Tuesday night’s defeat in Dover-Foxcroft to drop to 3-12.

Foxcroft basketball

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
HYATT SOARING HIGH — Foxcroft senior Hyatt Smith goes up for a dunk over John Bapst senior Alec Gagnon, with Crusader senior Ethan Newcomb looking on, during the third quarter of a Jan. 29 game in Dover-Foxcroft. The Ponies won 78-73 on Senior Night for Smith and classmates Jair Garcia, Jeremy Richard, and Matt Spooner.

The two teams combined for 22 made shots from beyond the 3-point with John Bapst having a 13-9 advantage from long distance. Crusader sophomore Cayman Zephir had the last of the 13 3-pointers at the 3:21-mark to put his team ahead 73-68 as John Bapst had a 13-6 scoring advantage since starting the fourth quarter trailing by two at 62-60.

The Ponies were not done shooting from past the arc as a 3-pointer by junior Jed Dean cut the deficit to two at 73-71.

Following a stop on the other end of the court, Richard was fouled to put Foxcroft in the double-bonus (vs. only four fouls against the team). Richard converted both his free throws to tie the game at 73.

Sophomore Lucas Ames would then grab a defensive rebound to give the ball back to the Ponies and Richard was fouled again as John Bapst tried to make the steal. At the 1:35-mark he sank his first foul shot for what would be the winning point and then he sank shot No. 2 to put Foxcroft ahead 75-73.

Foxcroft basketball

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
MAKING SOME BIG SHOTS NEAR THE END — Senior Jeremy Richard would go 8-of-9 on his free throw attempts during the fourth quarter to help the Ponies turn a 73-68 deficit into a 78-73 win at home vs. John Bapst. Richard had 10 of his team-high 24 points in the last eight minutes.

John Bapst followed by having a pass go out of bounds, and 20 seconds later a jump ball call went to the Ponies with the arrow pointing Foxcroft’s way. The extension of the possession led to Richard again being fouled on a reach-in. His first shot bounced off the rim but he made the most of the double-bonus by converting the second free throw to increase the lead to 76-73 with 60 seconds to go.

Smith came up with a rebound underneath the John Bapst basket following two Crusader misses and Richard would again be fouled as he brought the ball up the court. Richard sank both foul shots to up the lead to 78-73 with 33.2 seconds to go and put John Bapst away for good.

Richard went 8-of-9 from the charity stripe during the fourth quarter for the majority of his 10 total points in the final eight minutes as the Ponies outscored John Bapst 16-13 in the fourth. Foxcroft was 8-for-10 overall on foul shooting in the final quarter, and John Bapst had zero such opportunities over the same stretch.

Seven points in the third gave Richard 17 in the second half and he ended up leading his team at 24 points.

Foxcroft basketball

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
STILL IN PLAY — Pony senior Matt Spooner extends to keep the ball in-bounds during the second quarter on Jan. 29 as he tips it to teammate Sam Harmon-Weeks and away from John Bapst junior Rhett McDonald (14) and sophomore Cayman Zephir (32).

Smith was next with 16 points and Dean and Garcia both reached double figures with 11 points apiece.

John Bapst senior Jagger Cummings made seven of his team’s 13 3-pointers for 21 of his game-high 28 points.

BOYS BASKETBALL
Foxcroft 78
John Bapst 73
JB 21 18 21 13 | 73
FA 17 20 25 16 | 78
John Bapst: Cummings 28,
Zephir 11, Dube 9, Gagnon
9, Marvin 5, Newcomb 5,
Norman 4, McDonald 2.
Foxcroft: Richard 24,
Smith 16, Dean 11, Garcia
11, Ames 8, Spooner 5,
Harmon-Weeks 3.
Records: John Bapst 3-12,
Foxcroft 7-9.

Foxcroft basketball

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
RAINING THREES — Junior Sam Harmon-Weeks sinks a shot from beyond the arc over John Bapst senior Ethan Newcomb during the third quarter as Pony senior Jeremy Richard (3) has no doubt the shot will be good. The two teams combined for 22 3-pointers during the game and while the visiting Crusaders had a 13-9 advantage in this statistic, Foxcroft won via a score of 78-73.

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