“That was a designed play to get me the ball,” McKenna said of Danvers’ final possession. “We all love the pressure. We play basketball because we love those last second shots and the big time pressure. You can’t let it wear on you, you just have to make a free throw like you have so many times before.
The Falcons got crushed by Martha’s Vineyard on the glass in the first half. Danvers went to the locker room with the game tied at 24, due in large part to the Vineyarders’ ability on the offensive glass.
Rebounding was clearly a major focal point of Walsh’s halftime adjustments.
“We ended up just assigning certain people (to box out) because it seemed they had certain kids in and around the hoop killing us on the glass. We assigned box outs and had Danny Connors go find Navardo Anderson and just let Nick Bates float free and rebound at the rim,” Walsh said. “That was the only way we were going to rebound. Then we also said, and it happened quite often, if you can’t get the rebound, just smash it out. Danny must have done that four or five times.”
Bates was a monster on the glass, grabbing 17 boards, many of which came after halftime.
Danvers has won 10 straight tournament games dating back to last season. The win tonight puts them at 19-19 in the tournament all-time.
The Falcon’s have already won as many tournament games as they did last year (five), tying for most wins in a single postseason and have a chance to extend that milestone providing a victory on Saturday.
Before Walsh started coaching in 2011, Danvers had never won more than one tournament game in a season. Walsh’s postseason record is 12-1.
Junior Kieran Beck might have logged just two minutes of play, but made every second that he was out there count.