Wildcats ground Eagles

Tuesday January 15, 2013


Manchester Journal

ARLINGTON -- A game that started off looking like a rout ultimately wasn't decided until the waning moments.

In the end though, Twin Valley High School was able to hang on and secure a 57-54 win over Arlington Memorial High School in boys basketball.

"My guys hung around. We made just enough to sneak away," said Twin Valley coach Chris Brown. "We've had some close games here before. It's a fun atmosphere to play in. My boys needed this. It's good to nail one down especially against a good team on the road."

With 4.9 seconds left to play, the Eagles came back on the floor after a timeout, needing a 3-pointer to send the game into overtime.

But an errant inbounds pass over the head of senior Alex Hawley turned the ball over to the Wildcats, who ran out the clock.

Arlington dug themselves into a hole early, trailing by as many as 15 points midway through the third quarter.

That's when Hawley -- the game's leading scorer with 19 -- stepped up. Over the next three possessions, Hawley converted a 3-point play, knocked down a pair of free throws and hit a floater in the lane.

Then with 1:29 remaining in the quarter, Hawley capped an 11-point Arlington run with a jumper to pull the Eagles within one.

"He's one of our senior leaders," said Arlington coach Chris Taft. "He handles the ball well and he finishes well. He's a big strong kid. We have to get Alex Hawley going every night, ideally."

Junior DJ Jennings also had a big night for the Eagles recording a double-double near the end of the third quarter and finishing with 15 points, 12 rebounds and two blocks.

Junior Dal Nesbitt led the Wildcats in scoring with 18 points and also contributed a steal and a rebound. Junior Colin Lozito was not far behind, posting 16 points and also having a steal on the night.

After the game, Brown said it was Lozito who played a key role in Twin Valley's victory.

"Tonight he won the game with his passing," said Brown. "He hit Eli Park for two underneath and Sam Molner for one in the fourth quarter. It was a great win for us. I'm happy for my boys. They need this."

Arlington will be on the road against Black River on Wednesday. The game begins at 6 p.m.


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