The Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School boys basketball team played on the home court at the “Sancy” Pachico Gym in Oak Bluffs for the first time in nearly a month on Wednesday afternoon, hosting the Coyle and Cassidy Warriors of Taunton in the Eastern Athletic Conference opener.
Coach Mike Joyce’s young Vineyarders got off to a nightmare start, and trailed 20-3 after the first quarter, with Aiden Araujo sinking a three-pointer for the only basket. The hosts got their bearings and played better as the game wore on, particularly in the second half, but the Warriors got the win, 62-43.
“After the first quarter we played better, we played with confidence and energy,” Mr. Joyce said. “I don’t think they understand that you’ve got to come out from the beginning playing as hard as you can, going for every loose ball.”
Despite giving a dogged defensive effort for much of the game, the Vineyarders couldn’t stop the Warriors trio of senior Kelvin Kariuki (15 points), junior Chuma Oyigbo (16), and freshman Brian Taylor (13).
“I think defensively, we played good,” Coach Joyce said. “The whole second half the kids played hard, they put in effort on ‘D’ and were getting after it, which we need to do every game. They had so much size on us that it was a problem. No. 15 [Taylor] is the most savvy freshman I’ve ever seen. He understands the game so well. Even though he’s not that tall, he knows how to play the post like an old man. Got his body [in position], fake, fake, and got it in. Our kids just don’t have the savvy to do that yet.”
Rammon Dos Santos led the Vineyarders with 12 points, and drained a trio of treys. Mike Trusty and Mike Habekost chipped in six points apiece, and Dylan Dyke added five.
The Vineyarders (2-6 overall, 0-1 EAC) are back on the road for the next five games, beginning with a non-league contest at Mashpee on Monday.
Vineyard JVs win
Earlier in the afternoon, the Vineyard JV boys roared back from a 16-11 first-quarter deficit and downed the Warriors, 60-36. Billy Kirby was the high scorer for MV with 13 points, followed by Aiden Rogers with 12, and Nico DePaula with 11.