BAR HARBOR — A devastating last-second buzzer-beater stood between the Mount Desert Island High School varsity boys’ basketball team and another victory.
The Trojans fell to Orono High School Tuesday night 51-49 after 32 minutes of close play. The Trojans are now 14-2 heading into the final two games of the regular season.
Both teams got off to a slow start with Orono leading the first quarter 10-9. Mac Shea scored six points, and Andrew Phelps sank a 3-pointer.
MDI led scoring in the second quarter with 11 points from Phelps, Riley Swanson, Russell Kropff, Colby Lee and Drew Rich. Orono scored six points for a score of 16-20 heading into halftime.
In the third quarter, both teams ratcheted up the pressure.
The Trojans scored 22 points, and the Riots put up 17 points, to go 33-42 heading into halftime. Swanson sank three 3-pointers in the quarter while Kropff scored six points. Derek Collin and Aaron Snurkowski also put up points for MDI.
In the fourth quarter, the Trojans and Riots were neck-and-neck, with each team answering the other’s points and rebounds.
But MDI slowly gave up its 11 point lead for a score of 48-49 with just over a minute remaining.
With seconds left in the game, Orono was in possession of the ball as the team attempted to run out the clock.
The Trojans got the ball back and made efforts to get to the basket, but were thwarted by the Riots’ defense. With just 4.9 seconds left in the game, Orono took a timeout, and it looked like MDI might come away with a one-point win.
But as soon as the whistle blew, the Riots got the ball to Nate Desisto, who shot consistently and often throughout the game.
With time running out, Desisto positioned himself just beyond half-court and sank a 3-pointer to take the 51-49 win.
Desisto led the scoring for Orono with 25 points, followed by Keenan Collette with 12 points.
Swanson led MDI scoring with 15 points, while Kropff made 11 points.
Collin scored seven points and Mac Shea put up six points. Gus Reeves scored four points while Phelps, Rich and Snurkowski scored two points apiece.
Standout scorer Graham Good was suited up ahead of Tuesday night’s game but did not play, as was the case during the Trojans’ last two contests at Presque Isle High School and Caribou High School. School administrators would not comment on his absences from the court or his status for upcoming games.
Head Coach Justin Norwood said the Trojans’ loss was due to missed opportunities and unforced errors, which the Riots were able to capitalize on.
“We did a lot of things we shouldn’t have done – not fronting someone and there were some defensive assignments missed that Orono took advantage of,” said Norwood.
The coach said his team should have won the game, but too many little errors got in the way.
“We had every chance in the world to win tonight, and we just didn’t finish,” said Norwood. “But that’s the way the cookie crumbles sometimes I guess.”
MDI at Caribou
The Caribou High School Vikings were no match for the MDI Trojans’ offense last Saturday afternoon in Caribou. The Trojans defeated the Vikings 80-38 in a game that saw double-digit scoring from several MDI players.
Right off the bench, MDI scored 19 points in the first quarter and allowed Caribou to score just six points.
In the second quarter, MDI again put up 19 points, this time to Caribou’s eight, for a first half score of 38-14.
The Trojans came back from halftime to rack up more points. MDI scored 25 points in the third as the Vikings rallied to score 14 points for a game score of 63-28 heading into the final eight minutes.
In the last quarter, MDI put up 17 points while Caribou had 10 for a final score of 80-38.
Kropff scored 17 points for the Trojans, followed by Phelps with 14 points, including two 3-pointers.
Rich put up 12 points and was 4-for-4 from the foul line.
Reeves scored nine points, followed by Lee with six.
Sophomore Drew Shea scored five points, while Mac Shea and Parlatore each scored four points.
James McConomy sank a 2-pointer and was 1-for-3 from the foul line.
Swanson, Jimmy Carroll and Derek Collin each scored two points.
MDI at Presque Isle
MDI suffered its first loss of the season last Friday night when it fell to Presque Isle 60-53.
It was another close game for the Trojans, who earlier in the week narrowly defeated Central High School 44-39 at home.
This time, it was the Wildcats the Trojans had to answer to.
Despite losing to MDI 90-67 in Bar Harbor the week prior, the Wildcats’ early lead set the team up for a win.
In the first quarter, Presque Isle scored 18 points and allowed only 11 points by the Trojans.
Presque Isle again outscored MDI in the second quarter with 15 points, while the Trojans scored 13 points, for a first half score of 33-24.
After halftime, the Wildcats held the Trojans to nine points while racking up 12 for a score of 45-36 heading into the fourth quarter.
MDI put on the pressure in the final eight minutes of the game, racking up 20 points and holding Presque Isle to 15 points, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the first quarter deficit, and the game ended 60-53.
Swanson led the scoring for MDI with 14 points, including three 3-pointers and three of four foul shots.
Collin scored 11 points, followed by Reeves with seven points.
Mac Shea scored six points including both 3-point attempts.
Parlatore had four points, while Phelps and Rich scored two points apiece.
Good traveled with the team to Presque Isle but did not play.
For the Wildcats, Eric Tompkins and Griffin Guerrette led the scoring with 13 points each.
The Trojans will take on Houlton High School on Saturday, Feb. 4, at 4:30 p.m. The boys’ final regular season game will be at Ellsworth High School on Thursday, Feb. 9, at 7 p.m.