SPRINGFIELD — Dylan Clark’s bucket with under four minutes remaining gave Bellows Falls its first lead of the game as the Terriers came from behind for a dramatic win, 45-42.
“I’d rather not start a game down 17-2 but we did and we found a way to win tonight” said BF head coach John Hollar.
The Cosmos opened the game sky high and lit up the scoreboard for 20 first quarter points as six different players found the bottom of the net.
Sam Presch, Greg Otis and Noah Zierfus all drained shots from beyond the arc. Not only were the shots dropping for Springfield but its on the ball pressure disrupted any BF offense limiting the visitors to only 6 points in the quarter.
“We seem to always be in a position where we are down early in the game and tonight was no different, we just kept our composure and punched back” said BF guard Carver Scott.
With the Cosmos’ Zierfus coming off the bench to ignite his team early, it was the Terriers Clark who began to assert himself in the paint during the next eight minutes as the Springfield lead slowly began to shrink. Clark dropped in six points in the second quarter and the Springfield lead was down to 29-21 at the half.
“We slowed the game down in the first half but when we went to the press after halftime, it got us in our running mode” said BF’s Griffin Waryas.
Springfield came out of the locker room ice cold, while the Terriers were off to the races and sliced the lead to 31-29 before Otis pushed the lead back to four with a short jumper.
The large crowd was really into the game, setting up a frantic final eight minutes with Springfield clinging to a 37-35 lead.
“We played within ourselves and tried to keep out composure early, I think we handled it pretty well and then when we started to hit our shots, our confidence grew” Clark said.
Springfield settled into a zone defense and kept the Terriers at bay until Isaac Wilkinson’s free throws tied the game 37-37. Jacob Stepler’s free throw and a beautiful reverse layup from Zierfus pushed the Springfield lead back to 40-37.
Ryan Kelley’s fast break layup was followed by layup by Clark that gave BF its first lead of the game 41-40.
Presch cut the lead to a single point then Scott’s reverse layup put the Terriers back up 45-42 with 20 seconds remaining. After a Springfield timeout, the BF defense didn’t allow a good look at the hoop as it pressured the 3-point arc and forced Zierfus to take a deep 3 that rattled around the rim and out to secure a BF win.
“We believe in ourselves and we’re just happy to grab a win against a really good and well-coached Springfield team” Hollar said.
Clark led BF with 15 points and Kelley added 11 points while Zierfus led the Cosmos with 12 points and Otis chipped in with eight points.
BF (5-2) will host Hartford on while Springfield (3-4) will travel to Woodstock. Both games are at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday.