The quicker, sharper, better shooting Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School boys hoops squad beat a big, game Bishop Feehan Shamrocks team handily Friday evening, 71-53, at the home gym. A huge crowd – for school vacation week – filled the Vineyard bleachers on March 2, to see Peter Keaney, Izak Browne, Del Araujo, Charlie Everett and company take the lead at the jump and hold it the whole game.
With this win in the books, the Vineyard squad moves on in the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association tournament. The second seeded Vineyardars will next play Westwood on Wednesday at 5:30 pm in Taunton.
The Vineyarders combined solid outside shooting on the offensive side, and a stifling full-court press on the defensive end, to put the game out of reach midway through the second half. Peter Keaney led the Vineyarders with 21 points.
The first half for both teams was ragged with mediocre shooting and missed opportunities. The Vineyard was up 15-10 when the first quarter ended. But the Islanders settled down to their work as the second wore on, and things began to click. Although Feehan showed several defensive faces, none worked as the Vineyard smoothed out the wrinkles and began to control the boards at both ends. Keaney began to find his range, penetrating and feasting on the offensive boards. The Vineyard led 30-18 at the half.
In the third quarter, the Purple and White, more patient and their shots falling consistently, did a good job distributing the ball. The defense stole the ball and harried the Feehan ballhandlers and passers, causing several turnovers. By the end of the quarter, the Vineyard had pulled out to a 47-31 lead.
In the fourth, Feehan discovered that it could get the ball into its six foot, seven inch center, Brendan Fowler, who had a soft, turnaround baseline jumper that connected to spark the visitors.
But it was way too late, and even though the Vineyard managed only a two point advantage over Feehan during the period, 24-22, the fat lady had sung, and the Islanders were moving on.