Another epic finish, game for Mariners, WindjammersOceanside uses trifectas to overcome tough Camden Hills
Augusta — Nothing like a little drama packed into a few minutes to get the blood flowing and senses ready for the upcoming regional high school basketball tournaments.
That is because the Oceanside and Camden Hills boys squads put on a nice pre-playoff show Saturday night, Feb. 8 at Cony High School in the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B championship game.
After three quarters of solid hoops in front of a packed gymnasium, the Mariners and Windjammers pushed it up several notches with a wild, intense final eight minutes as Oceanside pulled out a 61-58 victory to capture the league crown.
Camden Hills held a 13-point lead during the fourth stanza before Oceanside used a 13-0 run to tie the game 51-51. From there, it was anyone's game.
David Gould and Nick Mazurek drilled three 3-pointers apiece for the Mariners in the fourth quarter. In fact, Gould tallied 21 points in the game, 18 via the 3-point shot.
Camden Hills led 15-12 after the first quarter and Oceanside held a 26-25 edge at halftime. The Windjammers led 39-38 after three stanzas.
In the fourth quarter, the teams combined for 42 points.
Mariner coach Matt Breen said, “It’s nice to win a conference championship.”
And that his team rebounded after being down 13 points in the fourth quarter Saturday night against the talented Windjammers is just another example of why his squad has been one of the best in the league all year.
“The kids have really responded to adversity all season,” said Breen. “You can’t tell if they’re up 10 or down 10 when you watch them and that’s really been a key for us. It was big.”
Oceanside, which netted 13 treys, were led by Gould with 21 points; Mazurek and Isaiah Stone-Patterson, 12; Hunter Grindle, eight; Nick Judge, four; Keenan Hendricks, three; and Jarrod Leonardi, one. The Marines made 6-of-10 free throws (60 percent). Gould connected on six 3-pointers and Mazurek four treys.
For Camden Hills, Colin Morse, the league's Class B player of the year, poured in 30 points. Also, Chandler Crans added seven; John Hall, six; Jason Kuhn and Andrew Hall, five; and Connor Graffam, four. The Windjammers made 6-of-10 foul shots (60 percent).
Midcoast hoop fans got another dose of competitive court fun between the rivals Saturday night and a nifty warm-up for the regional playoffs.
The game might have been a prelude to the Eastern Class B title game in the coming weeks at the new Cross Insurance Center.
Camden Hills coach Jeff Hart said Saturday’s loss was “not an easy one to take.”
“We gave up wide-open looks [in the fourth quarter],” he said. “We hadn’t done that all night then all of the sudden we’re giving up wide-open looks. We got a lead and relaxed and didn’t finish the job. So hopefully we learn from that.”
With the Windjammers ahead by one point heading into the fourth quarter, that advantage quickly swelled to 10 points at 48-38 as Morse netted nine straight points on a layup, two free throws, an offensive putback and a trey, with six minutes left.
Crans then was fouled by Judge and, subsequently, converted the three-point play to put the hosts up 13 points with 5:28 remaining, The foul was Judge’s fifth, which disqualified him from the contest.
However, Gould, named second-team all-conference earlier in the night, went on a scoring run of his own as he rattled off eight straight on a close-range hoop and a pair of treys, which put the Mariners down 51-46.
Camden Hills then committed two straight turnovers, which Oceanside turned into five straight points off a Stone-Patterson jumper and the game-tying trey by Gould from well beyond the three-point arc with 4:12 left in regulation.
Gould explained his sharp-shooting simply.
“You’ve just got to shoot with confidence, I guess,” he said. “When you’re open just hit the shot."
The then Windjammers then rattled off seven straight points off a trey from Kuhn and hoops from John Hall and Crans to make it 58-51 with three minutes remaining, but Mazurek converted on three straight 3-point attempts, the last one with 1:20 remaining to put Oceanside ahead 60-58.
“It’s just our team,” said Mazurek. “We just don’t get down when things aren’t going our way. That’s what makes us great to be able to bounce back off little things like that. People get hot and make a few shots, and then you never know.”
After a Gould free throw the Windjammers had potential game-tying 3-pointers by Morse and Andrew Hall miss the mark in the waning seconds.
During the season, Oceanside defeated Camden Hills 84-67 in Rockland then the Windjammers returned the favor with an unbelievable 88-83 double-overtime victory in Rockport, a game which saw the Mariners lead late only to see Camden Hills make several unbelievable plays/shots and comebacks.
The KVAC title game participants were determined by the two league teams with the most Heal Points at the end of the regular season.
In the final Maine Principals' Association Heal Point Standings for Eastern Class B, Oceanside (16-2, 159.8765 points) finished first and Camden Hills (15-3, 130.7099 points) second.
Morse of Bath (second in Western Class B, 14-4, 129.9691 points) made a late-season push to be the second team in the KVAC boys title game but fell just shy — 0.7408 of a point, in fact — of Camden Hills.
In the girls KVAC Class B title game Saturday night at the same venue, Nokomis of Newport (second in Eastern Class B, 18-0, 149.5370 points) beat Lincoln Academy of Newcastle (fourth in Western Class B, 15-3, 108.4877 points) 56-34.
Between the championship games, the league's all-conference teams and players/coaches of the year were announced (see below).
Midcoast boys teams have met several times for the league crown in recent years. For at least the last seven years, either Camden Hills, Rockland/Oceanside or Medomak Valley of Waldoboro have been in the KVAC Class B title game.
A little recent league boys court history:
2012-13 — Medomak Valley won by default over Oceanside (games not played due to weather).
2011-12 — Medomak Valley beat Gardiner.
2010-11 — Camden Hills beat Medomak Valley.
2009-10 — Camden Hills beat Mount View of Thorndike.
2008-09 — Camden Hills beat Rockland.
2007-08 — Camden Hills beat Maranacook of Readfield.
Midcoast KVAC Class B all-conference selections
Boys player of the year — Camden Hills' Morse.
Boys first-team all-conference — Camden Hills' Morse; Medomak Valley's Nicholas DePatsy; and Oceanside's Stone-Patterson.
Boys second-team all-conference — Camden Hills' Crans; and Oceanside's Gould and Judge.
Boys all-rookie team — Medomak Valley's Zach Starr.
Boys all-defensive team — Camden Hills' Morse; and Oceanside's Gould.
Boys all-academic — Belfast's Asa Lewis; Camden Hills' Crans and John Hall; Mount View's Jack Simpson; and Oceanside's Grindle and Gould.
Girls coach of the year — Medomak Valley's Randy Hooper.
Girls first-team all-conference — Medomak Valley's Hannah Marks.
Girls second-team all-conference — Camden Hills' Rachel Pease; and Oceanside's Emily Gould.
Girls all-rookie team — Camden Hills' Charlotte Messer.
Girls all-defensive team — Camden Hills' Pease.
All-academic — Camden Hills' Jaclyn Gilson; Medomak Valley's Brooke Benedict and Kristi Severson (manager); Mount View's Morgan Clifford and Courtney Morse; and Oceanside's Brooke Dugan.