“Huge,” Salem coach Tommy Doyle said, describing Holloway’s contributions. “Not only did he score, but he also did a lot of effort things defensively. Another kid got a blocked shot, but it was caused by him sprinting back on defense. He just gave us a charge off the bench. He went in and played his heart out on both ends of the court.”
Salem outscored Beverly 20-8 in the second quarter, and that was simply too much for the Panthers to overcome on this night.
“I think we lost our composure for like a four-minute stretch and we kind of played hurry up,” Lewis said. “In the first quarter, when we ran our stuff we kind of scored fairly easy, and then in the second quarter we kind of got out of it and tried to play hurry up. We lost our composure and that was a big stretch because we fell behind and couldn’t get close again.”
Beverly got solid contributions from Jon Berchoff (16 points), Nick Cross (16), and Dom Abate (12), but it wasn’t enough to match the Witches.
Dunston led all scorers with 19 points, Baez added 16 and Billy Muse hit for 12. Reserve forward David Kazadi also drew high praise from Doyle. Kazadi grabbed seven rebounds for the Witches.
Beating Beverly is always important for Salem, but this game had added importance because of Friday’s loss to Classical.
“It means a lot coming off the loss,” Dunston said. “We were all really upset and we were trying to figure out how we could fight, how we could redeem ourselves. Tonight was the night to redeem ourselves and show everybody that we might give up leads, but we’re going to fight to the finish and keep pushing and keep our foot on the gas.”