The playoffs started one game early for the Sandwich boys’ basketball team.
Needing a win in their final regular season game of the season, the Blue Knights pulled away late in the fourth quarter to secure their place in the Division 3 South Sectional tournament.
Sandwich trailed 46-39 after three quarters of play against Plymouth South, but used a 10-2 run at the start of the fourth quarter to prevail, 64-57, in the consolation round of the Sean Cotter Tournament on Wednesday, February 19, at Abington High School.
The Panthers closed within five points with 37 seconds left, but late free throws assured the Knights of at least one more game this season.
SHS jumped out to a 20-15 lead to open the first quarter before the Panthers fought back to earn a three-point halftime advantage, 32-29.
Rockland 67, Sandwich 45
The Blue Knights couldn’t play the role of David to the one-loss Bulldogs’ Goliath in the first round of the Sean Cotter Tournament at Abington High School on Monday, February 17.
Sophomore Sean Lansing posted a team-high 13 points in defeat.
Sandwich 61, Nantucket 54
On the Knights’ senior day, it was a sophomore who fended off the visiting Whalers and kept his team’s playoff hopes alive on Friday, February 14. Lansing scored eight of his team-high 16 points in the fourth quarter to deny Nantucket an afternoon Cape & Islands crossover victory.
Sandwich turned a one-point deficit, 17-16, through one quarter of play into a 29-26 halftime advantage and carried 44-43 lead into the fourth. The hosts were led early by junior Chris Cronin, who scored 12 of his 16 points in the first half.
Senior Jack Mandy also came out firing early, scoring all five of his points in the first quarter. Classmate and co-captain JP Downes hit a 3-pointer in every quarter and finished with 14 points for the Knights.
Nantucket was anchored by senior guard Devonte Usher’s game-high 19 points. He scored eight points as part of the Whalers’ 17-point opening quarter before getting shut down in the second. He came back strong after halftime, adding eight more in the third quarter. He was the lone Whaler to finish in double figures.
Junior forward Colby Leighton added six points while Matt Mandy and Tim Bengtson combined for four points in the win to round out the scoring for the Blue Knights.
Sandwich (9-9, 3-5 C&I Atlantic) completed its regular season and awaits seeding in the Division 3 South Sectional tournament.