(West Newbury, MA) Danny Hileman, have yourself a memorable game!
And he sure did.
The Pentucket reserve had a career-best twelve points, all in the second half, helping the Sachems defeat Greater Lowell Tech, 56-39, on Thursday night.
The Pentucket offense usually revolves around Nick Daly and CJ Condon and those two seniors were again big contributors.
Nick (20 points) drew extra coverage but was persistent enough inside to get points.
CJ (15 points) created his scoring with steals and drives.
But it was Danny who provided the comfortable cushion for the home team in the second half.
He hit four 3’s from right in front of the heavily involved Pentucket student section.
“I’ve been waiting for a game like this,” said Danny afterwards. “It was good to finally get it.”
“It was fun to do it in front of all my friends,” the Pentucket senior added. “It put me in a good mindset and gave me motivation.”
Nick Daly gave the Sachems (4-7) the lead for good, 16-15, halfway through the second quarter on a putback in heavy traffic.
“Those kids were tough,” said GLT coach Shane Abrams. “We got out-muscled. They got to every loose ball.”
The aggressive Pentucket zone defense was impressive.
“We’ve been really improving our team defense,” said Pentucket coach Ed Hickey post-game. “Our defensive effort tonight will keep us in a lot of games.”
It certainly did that in this game because that 16-15 lead in the second quarter was 32-17 five minutes into the third quarter.
The Gryphons from Tyngsboro had won six straight so I was expecting a point surge at some point but the Sachems defense never let up.
“Their zone spread us out,” said Coach Abrams, “and we couldn’t really penetrate the gaps. We also had trouble reversing the ball because of how well they defended the weakside.”
Danny struck twice from long-range in the closing minutes of the third quarter and Pentucket was up fifteen, 41-26, at the end of it.
Again Danny struck twice but this time it was in the fourth quarter boosting the Pentucket advantage to, 54-35, with three minutes left in the game to ice things.
“Danny stepped it up big tonight,” said Coach Hickey. “It was clearly the best game he’s ever played for us. He’s been earning more playing time with his defense in practice. He’s capable of knocking down shots and he did it tonight.”
Danny turned to the crowd after every three with a big smile on his face clearly enjoying the moment.
Coach Abrams: “We didn’t recognize that he (Danny Hileman) was a shooter until it was too late. With the big smile on his face, I think it was a surprise to him, too. Good for him. I’m happy for him.”
Coach Hickey: “It’s very exciting to get a home win. It was nice to have the student body behind us. We’ve become more connected to each other offensively and defensively. We’ve been really trying not to settle for an okay shot but really work the ball to get a great shot.”
Nesly Sainvil led the (7-3) Gryphons with ten points.
Plenty of contact under the basket. Noah Colon, Greyson McDonald, and Collin Abraham made the Sachems earn every basket they scored from in close.
Greater Lowell Tech is in the Commonwealth Athletic Conference.
Chase Dwight scored one point but I’m betting he had close to ten rebounds.
Pentucket 11 13 17 15 = 56
Greater Lowell 11 6 9 13 = 39
(The pictures will enlarge.)