Close only counts in horseshoes, as the saying goes, and the Revere High boys basketball team learned the truth of that axiom after last Mondayâ€™s 72-67 loss at Beverly in triple overtime.
â€œBoth teams had ample opportunity to win the game in regulation and the first two overtimes,â€ said RHS head coach Rick Hayes. â€œIt was a heartbreaking loss for us, but an exciting game at the same time.â€
Greg Cabral forced the game into the third OT when he hit a game tying basket at the end of the second OT, but he almost won the game when he stole the ensuing Beverly inbounds pass with the clock ticking down the waning seconds and hurriedly tossed up a shot from just beyond the three point arc.
However, the attempt by Greg, who is a fine shooter from three point land, was one of the in and out variety, as it rattled around the rim before bouncing out as time expired.
The Pats also held the lead in the final minute of the third OT, 65-64, but a Beverly basket, followed by a Beverly three pointer after a Revere miss, boosted the host Panthers into a 69-65 lead which proved insurmountable for the Patriots.
Cabral and Trey Weathers shared scoring honors with 22 points apiece. Matt Handy added six points; Ed Maglio and Jonathan Muteba chipped in with five each; Chris Adreani hit for four; and Frank Colleran added three.
Two days later the Pats traveled to Lynn Classical and dropped a 56-43 decision. Classicalâ€™s brother duo of Jasper and Nick Grassa stunned the Pats in the opening moments by draining three, three pointers for a quick 9-0 Classical lead from which the Pats never would be able to recover.
The Classical lead stayed at nine after one period and nine at the half before Classical extended its margin to 13 after three frames.
Cabral was the high scorer for the Pats with 15 points, while Trey Weather was limited to just three thanks to a box and one defense that often saw Trey double teamed whenever he touched the ball in the Classical zone defense.
Handy and Scoobie Mageza hit for seven points each, while Muteba and Paul Norton added four apiece.
One highlight for the Pats was the appearance for a short time of Captain Will Weathers, who has been recovering from an ankle injury he suffered during the football season. Although Will played sparingly, he still managed to pull down nine rebounds and chip in three points.
â€œWill is still at less than 100 percent, but his value to this team will be immense once he comes back,â€ noted Hayes. â€œHeâ€™s our best rebounder, especially under the defensive boards.â€ The Pats also were missing the services of Adreani, who suffered a thigh contusion in the Beverly contest and who, like Weathers, provides a strong and effective presence under the boards.
Hayes and his squad will play at former GBL rival Chelsea this Wednesday and then will host Peabody next Tuesday.