Beacon advances to Dutchess tourney final
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POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. — Frenetic. Almost frantic.
It’s the only way to describe how the Beacon High School boys play basketball. Just don’t call it out of control. The Bulldogs know exactly what they’re doing – just ask Ketcham.
Beacon ran, ran and ran some more on Wednesday night, and the Bulldogs blew out the Indians, 79-52, in one semifinal of the 23rd annual Dutchess County Coaches Association Holiday Tournament, held at Our Lady of Lourdes.
Beacon will play for the title on Friday night against the winner of the second semifinal, to be played Thursday between Spackenkill and Arlington, both of whom will need the track shoes against the Bulldogs.
“We just run. That’s what we do,” said senior Jarell Brown, who had a game-high 18 points to lead four Beacon players in double figures. Ray Silva had 14 points, Marquise Brown – Jarell’s brother – had 12, and Damani Guscott had 11.
Give Ketcham credit – the Indians ran toe to toe with Beacon for as long as it could, cutting an 11-point halftime deficit to six in the first 60 seconds of the third quarter. But a Guscott layup ignited a 19-6 run that ended on a three-pointer by John Gonzalez that gave Beacon a 58-39 advantage heading into the fourth period.
“We run a lot of practice and we’re all in shape,” Jarell Brown said. “We’re not only in shape, we’re fast. That plays to our advantage.”
Ironically, Beacon coach Tom Power said he thought it was Ketcham that dictated the pace early on.
“I knew they were fast, I knew they were young, I figured they would do some kind of pressure and that really made our guys step it up to that frenetic pace,” Powers said. “I thought we made just a few more plays, just enough plays, to keep that 10-, 11-point lead at the half.”
Powers actually spread the court even more in the second half, using Silva more in a three-guard offense with the Brown brothers.
“Those three guys can fly around the court. You make one mistake and those guys are on it, and that’s what we wanted to see,” Powers said. “We wanted to make them run longer and that made a difference in the second half.”
Ketcham’s Xavier Boyd led his team with 15 points on five three-pointers.
Follow Rich Thomaselli on Twitter @RPTSPORTS