On Saturday, the boys basketball division two state championship game featured the number one ranked Portsmouth Clippers and the number two ranked Lebanon Raiders. Every day this week we will be breaking down each quarter with a special wrap up on Friday.
After halftime, Lebanon and Portsmouth were virtually tied in every offensive and defensive category from field goal percentage to rebounds to turnovers. Only one area stood out, Portsmouth had four assists and Lebanon had zero.
This isn’t a huge difference but because the score was only 17 to 14, those four assists led to 9 very crucial points. If Lebanon wants to keep pace with Portsmouth they will need to focus more on ball movement to get open high percentage shots and focus less on pull up three pointers as they are 0 for 11 in the game so far.
The third quarter begins and the sloppy play from both teams continue with turnovers and fouls left and right. But just over a minute into the quarter Lebanon’s Matthew Eylander hits a jumper to open the second half scoring. No points would be scored for the next two and a half minutes as stellar defense from both teams shut down all offense.
Then Matthew Eylander again hits a two pointer that finally gives Lebanon the lead at 18 to 17. Lebanon did not let Portsmouth score for the first four minutes of the quarter until Christian Peete nails a lead changing three point shot. Less than a minute later Ryan Milliken ends Lebanon’s three point troubles by hitting a beautiful jump shot from behind the arc to secure the lead again by a score of 21 to 20.
By the end of the quarter Portsmouth would score four straight to be up 25 to 21 as they barely outscored Lebanon 8 to 7 in the quarter. At this point, Portsmouth had 6 total assists while Lebanon again had zero.
Low percentage shots seemed to bring down the Raiders offensive numbers but nonetheless they played excellent defense and came out of the quarter with still a very close four point game.