Sunday, March 4, 2018

Landry, Delahunt Keep Hanover Alive with Fourth Quarter Surge

By Matt Feld (@Mattyfeld612)

Foxboro, Mass. – The two stars that helped bring Hanover its first state championship made sure the dream at a second one remained alive.

Trailing by one to No. 4 Foxboro and with just 30 seconds left, Indians’ guard JP Landry drove to the basket only to have his shot deflected. The ball, however, caromed right to senior Matt Delahunt who picked it up and connected on a foul line jumper to give Hanover a one-point lead.

At the other end, Hanover’s Andrew Carroll corralled a rebound while falling out of bounds to seal the No. 5 Indians 58-57 win over Foxboro on Sunday afternoon in the Division 2 South Sectional Quarter Final.

As the horn sounded, Matt Delahunt grabbed the ball and tossed it in the air as his teammates mobbed him in celebration.

“It was a tight, physical, contested game,” said an exhausted Delahunt. “This time of year the game gets emotional.”

While Delahunt (9 points, 12 rebounds) finished the Indians’ fourth quarter blitz, Landry kept the Indians offense afloat from the opening tip.

Landry finished with 25 points to go with seven rebounds.

“(JP) is just so tough,” said Hanover coach Nick Hannigan. “Mentally tough, too. When he walks in the gym you don’t realize he is a basketball player sometimes, but he’s just resilient. He’s the best point guard I’ve ever coached.”

The defending Division 3 champion Indians were on their heels to begin the final frame.

Foxboro began the fourth quarter up 48-45 and went on a 6-0 spurt highlighted by a Matt Rongione corner three-pointer to go in front 54-45 with just over five minutes left.

Hannigan called timeout, and the Indians, which have had their backs against the wall multiple times over the last two seasons, once again showcased their championship experience.

Landry tallied six straight points to pull the Indians within two, and after Rongione cut to the basket for two to put Foxboro up three, Landry came back the other way with a drive to the bucket to trim the Warriors’ lead to 57-56.

The Indians’ defense then came through with the biggest stop of the day as Delahunt hauled in the rebound to set up his own game winning score.

“Experience was the difference,” said Hannigan. “They’ve been down before but they just find a way. They’ve been together for so long that they know it’s going to come. We just had to make shots.”

Throughout the first half the Warriors appeared unstoppable offensively.

Over the first 16 minutes, Foxboro shot 58-percent from the field and six-of-nine from long range.

Borde and Rongione each hit three-pointers around a Bobby Harrison bucket to give the Warriors an 8-0 lead just two minutes in.

Landry came alive and finished a four-point play as part of a nine point first quarter.

Rongione, however, hit a second three pointer and Mollica finished a baseline drive to give Foxboro a 19-15 lead after one.

While Landry remained hot from the field, the Indians continued to have few answers for Foxboros’s offense.

After eight points from Landry and a basket from Carroll pulled Hanover within one, 30-29, Harrison responded with seven straight points to give the Warriors 36-31 lead at the break.

No comments :