Unionville hosted its annual holiday tournament and won both games to reach .500 on the season
By Dave Conard, Sports Editor, UnionvilleTimes.com
EAST MARLBOROUGH — As the Indians took the court this week in their annual Holiday tournament, head coach Anthony DiNicola and his squad had one objective, win both of their scheduled games and enter the new year with momentum and a .500 record.
“We had one goal coming in here,” said DiNicola. “We needed to win both of our games against two very good opponents, so we can head into the New Year with a clean slate and a .500 record to build on.”
For Unionville (4-4), the best way to describe their play in the tourney would be, Mission accomplished, as the Indians closed out the holiday classic with a nail biting 36-35 win over Nueva Esperanza to follow up a solid 62-52 win over Gospel of Grace Christian Academy.
The Indians raced out to a 16-2 run to start the tilt, thanks in large part to senior Parker Williams knocking down two of his game high three-3 pointers in the early going, before Saints sniper Christian Wims (29, 6-7, 35 points, 3-3pt FG) began his assault on the scoring sheet.
Wims accounted for all but four of Gospel of Grace’s first half points as inside or outside, the hosts had no answer for the school yard style of the Saints 5-foot, 10-inch senior guard.
“We don’t take any one for granted,” added DiNicola. “We scout every body, the night we saw them number 14 dropped 40 points. They have some very good players on that squad and with that kind of shooting they are never out of the game.”
After allowing Unionville to cruise to a 29-23 halftime lead, The Saints (4-4) cut the lead four following three pointer form Wims, prompting Unionville to call a time out to regroup.
“We talked about just focusing on finishing the plays,” said junior Brad Pechin, who hit two critical shots in the third period. “We did a great job shutting down Kelley, who has scored 40 a couple of times, then number twelve breaks out. Our plan was to keep trying to go inside, but when that wasn’t there we were able to hit a couple pf threes.”
Pechin hit a three pointer with four minutes left in the third then on the ensuing possession was able to find Sheets, cutting down the lane to regain the momentum and push the lead back to double digits.
Fueled by juniors Brandon Rusinque, who posted a team–high 21 points, including one three point goal, and Parker Williams (11 points) Unionville closed out the Saints with Rusinque recording ten points in the final quarter.
Gospel of Grace 11 12 11 18 -52
Unionville 21 8 15 18 -62
Gospel of Grace (52)
Turk 4, 2-4, 6; Kelley 4, 0-2, 4; Wims 29, 6-7, 35; Robinson 2, 0-0, 2; Hart 3, 0-0, 3; O’Donell 2, 0-0, 2. Totals 44, 8-13, 52. Three point FG Wims (3), Hart.
Rusinque 17, 4-4, 21; Fries 10, 1-2,11; Johnson 2, 0-1, 2; Tuvessen 4, 0-0, 4;Pechin 5, 0-0, 5; Pancoast 8, 0-1, 8; Williams 11, 0-0, 11. Totals 57 5-8 62. Three point FG- Willaims (3), Pechin, Fries (2), Rusiqnue.