WESTERLY — In a tight basketball game second chances can mean everything.
The Westerly High boys’ basketball team learned this lesson the hard way after it was solidly out-rebounded by Cumberland and lost Tuesday’s Division II crossover game 64-59.
Two of the most critical rebounds came late in the second half after the Bulldogs (3-6, 1-4 Division II-South) tied the score at 48-48.
“I don’t know if it was four points or five, but they (Cumberland) scored on the next two possessions and both buckets came off of offensive rebounds,” Westerly coach Mike Gleason said.
Gleason said his team was not able to tie the score again and the Clippers (4-4, 2-2 Division II-North) held on for the win.
Westerly grabbed just 25 rebounds as a team, only 15 of which were on the defensive glass.
“It was really frustrating to work so hard on the defensive side of the floor and have them get an offensive rebound and hit a 3,” Gleason said. “They got a lot of offensive rebounds and a lot of it was they were just out-hustling us and that can’t happen on your home floor.
“You’re not going to win a lot of games when you only get 15 rebounds.”
Gleason said the combination of some late additions (due to football obligations) and lack of practice time because of weather have hurt his team.
“It seems like every year the season gets shorter,” he said. “We don’t have a lot of time to turn it around.”
One positive for Westerly was the play of senior captain Scott Liguori who Gleason said had the best game of his career.
“I’m really proud to see him get to this point after missing the first couple of weeks this season,” he said.
Liguori, the quarterback on the football team who suffered a injury in the Thanksgiving Day game, scored 19 points and had five assists.
Jacee Hamelin led Westerly with 20 points and six assists.Barrington.......................55
BARRINGTON — Maddy McLaughlin scored 22 points, but the Bulldogs lost to Barrington on Tuesday.
The Bulldogs trailed 35-18 at the half of the Division I crossover game and were unable to climb out of the hole.
The Eagles (4-2 overall, 3-0 Division II-North) remain unbeaten in league play while Westerly (4-6, 2-3) dropped its second straight league game.
“They have three big post players and some good guards and we didn’t take care of the ball early, got down and had to fight our way back,” Westerly coach Holly Misto said.
McLaughlin added eight rebounds, seven steals and two assists to her 22-point night. She also made four 3-pointers. It was the fourth game this season the junior scored more than 20 points. She’s averaging 17.4 points per game after 10 games.
Izzy Carey scored 11 points and had eight rebounds for Westerly. The Bulldogs made just 6 of 19 (31.5 percent) attempts from the foul line and are shooting 46 percent from this season.
Maura Kelly paced Barrington with 17 points and Grecia Restituyo added 10.
Westerly outscored Barrington 22-20 in the second half.
“We played more physical in the second half and got better looks because we settled down a bit,” Misto said.
Westerly hosts Smithfield of I-North in a crossover game on Friday.
The game is scheduled for 7 p.m.