UC Tech Rams Hold Back Sturgis West in Afternoon Hoop Battle

HYANNIS – The Navigators came out swinging in this back-and-forth tete-a-tete yesterday afternoon at the Hyannis Youth and Community Center, but once Upper Cape Tech got loose and took the lead the Rams would not relinquish it.

Sturgis West's John Russell blocks the passing lane from Upper Cape Tech co-captain Austin Smolinsky in Tech's 61-49 victory yesterday in Hyannis. Sean Walsh/Capecod.com Sports

Sturgis West’s John Russell blocks the passing lane from Upper Cape Tech co-captain Austin Smolinsky in Tech’s 61-49 victory yesterday in Hyannis.
Sean Walsh/Capecod.com Sports

Backed by a 25-point performance from Alex Spinner and 17 points from Austin Smolinsky, Upper Cape Tech (9-9) defeated the host Sturgis West team (6-11), 61-49.

West was led by Mike Mondello (17 pts.) and John Russell (13 pts., 8 rebounds), but the Navigators’ offense could never quite get back on track once the visiting Rams took the lead just before the end of the first half.

Sturgis West got on top early with key buckets from Mondello, Russell, Max O’Hare and Connor Cameron, and built a 15-12 first quarter lead.

But in the second quarter a pair of three-pointers from Rally Wheaton and Spinner, along with buckets from Logan Cunningham and Tyler Glover, all added up to a comeback by the Rams for a 26-24 halftime lead.

The Rams would not allow that lead to slip through its fingers and in the third quarter turned up the heat considerably on the hosts. Smolinsky, Wheaton, Spinner and Nick Silvia all contributed in that frame but West could not find its usual cohesiveness and soon found itself on the wrong end of a 42-33 deficit.

The Navigators could not come out from under the weight of that deficit and Upper Cape Tech used its lightning-fast transition game to continue to pile on the points.

Tech faced Nauset this morning (see related story).

— Sean Walsh is the sports editor for www.capecod.com. His email is seanwalsh@ccb-media.com. Follow him on Twitter @coachwalshccbm



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