Wareham ends Vineyard’s thrilling run in state tourney, 70-65

Will Fielding, Brandon Watkins, and Will Stewart watched as the final seconds of the season ticked away. — Photo by Ralph Stewart

The Martha’s Vineyard boys’ basketball team’s thrilling run in the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) tournament came to an end Saturday with a 70-65 loss to old rival Wareham in the championship game of the Division 2 South Sectionals at UMass-Boston in Dorchester.

The second-seeded Vineyard fell behind 19-3 to the first-seeded Vikings in the first quarter, but they did not give up. After a 15-4 run, they trailed by only five in the second quarter. At the half, Wareham was up, 41-32.

Senior Charlie Everett had a career game, scoring 14 points in the first half and finishing with 20. The Vineyarders came out swinging in the second half and pulled to within two at 48-46 on a three-pointer by Delmont Araujo.

A large contingent of Islanders that traveled with the team exploded in celebration.

Senior stand-out Peter Keaney picked up his fourth foul with just over a minute left in the third. He had to sit out for most of the fourth quarter. But junior guard Jack Roberts picked up the slack, making a several key steals and draining several three-pointers to keep the game close.

The Vikings took a 59-50 lead early in the fourth, but Roberts scored five consecutive points, including a three-pointer, to pull the Vineyarders to within four at 59-55. After coming back in the game with 1:11 left, Keaney hit a two-point jumper and a three-pointer to pull the Vineyarders to within four again at 67-63.

But that was the closest the Vineyarders would get, as the Vikings made their free throws late to seal the 70-65 win. The Vikings, who remained undefeated on the season with the win, advanced to the Eastern Massachusetts Championship Game at TD Garden in Boston on Monday, where they lost to Danvers.

With the loss, the Vineyarders finished with a 21-3 record on the season.