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MANCHESTER — Burr and Burton unified basketball is going dancing. The Bulldogs claimed the South Division championship on Wednesday by defeating Mill River 46-35. The win punches BBA’s ticket to the state championship game next Wednesday at the University of Vermont’s Patrick Gym.

In the final seconds of the game, BBA’s Jacob Fifield brought the entire crowd of over 100 off their feet.

Fifield got the ball on the right block and fired a shot that bounced off the rim and out, but the Bulldog would not be denied. He put up another and this time connected on the shot.

As the ball fell through the hoop, Fifield turned around to see the entirety of the BBA bench, as well as everyone in the stands on their feet and erupting in cheer.

BBA UNIFIED 5/18/22

The Burr and Burton bench and fans go crazy after Jacob Fifield made a basket during the final moments of the fourth quarter. Burr and Burton advanced to the state championship game with its 46-35 win over Mill River on Wednesday. 

Keegin Arace had a similar moment early in the fourth. The BBA sophomore flashed his impressive range, sinking a long two-point jump shot that sent the crowd into a frenzy.

BBA UNIFIED 5/18/22

BBA's Keegin Arace (4) sets for a jump shot while Mill River's Avery Burney closes out on defense. 

Dylan “D-Dawg” Skandera was impressive throughout the BBA win. Skandera is excited at the opportunity to play for a state championship.

“I’m so glad for our team … I push our team to work hard and be able to grow and work together,” Skandera said.

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While he’s hopeful to win, Skandera is living in the moment.

“It doesn’t matter if we bring home a trophy, I know to be thankful we made it this far here today.”

Skandora had his fair share of highlight reel plays in the win. He made a jump shot while being guarded tightly near the hoop. That play even surprised him a little bit.

“I can’t believe I made it inside the paint when someone was guarding me, I just stepped back and shot it and that was the greatest. I just, I didn’t know I could do it, you know? And this game was pretty awesome.”

Mill River had its fair share of awesome moments, too.

Susan Benini was great at handling the ball and pushing the pace. She flashed a huge smile after sinking a foul shot in the second quarter. Zach King and Avery Burney also had great games for the visitors.

BBA UNIFIED 5/18/22

Mill River's Susan Benini goes up for a layup while being guarded by Burr and Burton's Dylan Skandera during Wednesday's unified basketball game in Manchester.

BBA will play the winner of the North Finals on Wednesday at 3 p.m. at Patrick Gym.

Michael Mawson can be reached on Twitter @Mawson_Sports or via email at mmawson@benningtonbanner.com.

Sports Reporter

Michael Mawson is the sports editor for Vermont News & Media. He obtained a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of New Hampshire in 2019. Michael was the sports editor of UNH’s student newspaper where he covered NCAA Division I athletics.


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