Brien McMahon High School boys basketball coach Mo Tomlin felt his team defense was good enough against Westhill in Saturday's quarterfinals of the Fairfield County Interscholastic Athletic Conference tournament at Fairfield Ludlowe High School. The Senators lost, 77-75, as the Vikings erupted for 28 points in the fourth quarter.
"They just shot the ball ridiculous,'' Tomlin said. "They didn't miss any shots, and we had hands in their faces. And we couldn't throw the ball in the ocean."
T.J. McCrae scored 18 points and C.J. Langley added 16 for sixth-seeded McMahon (16-6), which beat the Vikings back Jan. 9. Chris Walters scored 32 points to lead No. 3 Westhill (16-6). The Vikings will play Stamford in Monday's semifinals at Webster Bank Arena.
McMahon built a lead in the first half, 23-14, before Westhill responded with a 16-8 run to get within 31-30 entering the second half. The game stayed tight until midway through the fourth quarter. After a three-pointer by McCrae got the Senators within 64-61 with 3:56 left, Westhill went on a 10-0 run to go up 74-61 with 1:53 left. McMahon made a late rally, helped by three missed free throws by Westhill. McCrae's three-pointer with just four seconds left got McMahon within two. Westhill was able to get the ball inbounds and not allow the Senators another possession.
Chris Daniel added 13 for McMahon, and P.J. Tomlin added nine. McMahon won the battle on the boards but couldn't contain Westhill's hot hand from the perimeter. It was a disappointing loss for the Senators, who entered the tournament on a six-game winning streak and had won eight of their last nine.
"We're just going to refocus and work to get ready for the state tournament,'' Tomlin said. "It's a tough loss because we thought we had a shot to play for the championship."
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