Tuesday night in Mechanicville the Red Raiders built a commanding 17 point cushion through three periods of play, but needed a clutch triple from sophomore Josh Germaine late in the fourth to put away the Bengals and post the 64-57 “W”.
The two squads played evenly through the first eight minutes with Mechanicville’s Kendrick McCann and Tamarac’s Frank Zotto each scoring five points in the period.
McCann scored five straight for the Raiders midway through, on a free throw, a floater and a beautiful Euro-step move that excited all in attendance.
Zotto did his damage from the free throw line converting on 5 of 6 in a quarter that ended with the Raiders leading 13-10.
In the second, after a Zotto bucket off a baseline drive trimmed the Raider lead to 15-14, Mechanicville put together a 14-2 run.
Luciano D’Ambro scored seven points in the spurt including a bucket and one, and a nice finish on a sweet find from McCann who hit D’Ambro in stride with a bounce pass from the mid-court stripe.
McCann finished the period drilling a 3-ball, a precursor of what lied ahead, as the Red Raiders took a 35-25 advantage into the break.
In the third after a Zotto deuce for Tamarac, Josh Germaine went to work for Mechanicville with a long two, and a pair of threes, pushing the lead to 43-27.
McCann added a triple and finish at the rim, and Joey Germaine with a long ball and a lay-in pushed the spread to 55-34 with 1:39 left in the quarter. Light’s out for the Bengals or so it would seem.
Tamarac came to life to start the fourth putting together an impressive run of their own. A Nate Nolan putback and transition buckets by Zotto and Bo Catherwood trimmed the lead to 11 at 55-44.
After a D’Ambro floater for the Raiders, a Catherwood putback, a Matt Morrow free throw and a pair of scores from Zotto reduced the Mechanicville cushion to 58-54 with 2:00 remaining.
Nick Billert scored in the lane for the Raiders off a nice second effort, but Morrow answered with an inside bucket for the Bengals making it 60-56 with 1:30 remaining.
But after a third period where Mechanicville connected on four makes from behind the arc, Josh Germaine bottomed the biggest triple of the night, drilling it with 1:20 left and the Raiders closed it out from there to notch the well earned victory.
For Tamarac, (1-8, 4-9 ), Zotto with 18 points led the way for the Bengals with the freshman Catherwood adding 10.
Mechanicville placed three players in doubles with Josh Germaine and McCann scoring 16 points and D’Ambro netting 13 for the Raiders who with the win improve to 5-5, 8-6 on the season.