Two of the younger teams in D-I squared off in the QCIBT's seventh place game on Monday afternoon at Memorial High. Dover has just 2 seniors. Trinity only has 3 seniors and their starting point guard is only a freshman.
Both teams tinkered with various lineup combinations and went deep into their bench. Dover played 16 kids and Trinity went 9 deep. Despite the fact that it was a seventh place game, both times were using a lot of timeouts. There was a lot of teaching and 'coachable moments' by both Mike Romps of Dover and Trinity coach Matt Lemieux.
Trinity led throughout the contest. They led by as many as 17, when it was 63-46 midway through the 4th quarter and won it 67-58. The Pioneers were led by senior wing Connor Walsh (game-high 16 points), senior wing Justin Trickett (13 points) and freshman point guard Jordan Santos (13 points).
Walsh got Trinity off to a strong start, slashing down the lane for a finger roll. Devin Cady (7 points) hit a 3 for Dover, Trickett scored inside for 2 and Eric Evans (team-high 8 points) drained a 3 for Dover. It was 6-4 Green Wave early on, forcing Coach Lemieux to call a timeout. James Santos made a nice dish to a cutting Trickett for an and-1 finish.
Ryan Coleman (7 points) drove to the bucket for a reverse lay-in. Teammate Austin hit a 3 from the corner, as Dover re-takes the lead 11-9 and forcing another Trinity timeout. Pembroke transfer Dante Timbas came off the Trinity bench and dished it to Jordan Santos for a layup, tying it up 11-11 with 3:05 left in the 1st quarter.
Coleman made another strong drive, finishing through contact to put the Green Wave back on top 13-11. Walsh answered for Trinity, driving the lane and banking in a tough leaner, and-1. After a tip-in by Trickett it was 17-13 Pioneers after 1 quarter.
We had only played 1 quarter, but Dover already got 15 different kids into the game. Coach Romps was substituting five new players in every couple of minutes.
Jake Lipinski cut to the bucket and finished the layup early in the 2nd quarter for the Green Wave. Cady drove to the rim for a reverse lay-in. Then we got some good hustle by James Santos and Dover's Nick Hendrickson getting on the floor and battling for a loose ball. Trinity forward Pat Mackey grabbed a steal at 3/4 court and took it all the way in for the easy layup, making it 22-17 Pioneers.
Ryan Innis buried a 3-pointer off the catch from the right wing for Dover. Walsh countered, driving into the lane for a scoop shot. Griffin Young connected on a 3 for the Green Wave. Walsh again countered, with a nice up-and-under move for 2 more. James Santos hit a tough floater in the lane off the bounce, and Timbas hustled back on 'D' to make a nice blocked shot. Coleman drove for a nice and-1 finish, and it was 28-26 Trinity at halftime.
Young (team-high 8 points) drilled another 3-pointer just six seconds into the 2nd half, putting Dover back ahead 29-28. But then Trinity took control, going on a 13-2 run. Walsh dished it to Trickett, who finished in traffic. Jordan Santos hit a 3 off the catch, and then just seconds later Jordan Santos grabbed a steal near mid-court and took it in for the layup. Cole Carter made good steal for Dover, zipping a pass ahead to John Cantwell for a fast-break layup. Walsh made a good move along the baseline for a reverse lay-in to make it 41-31 Trinity, as the Pioneers began pulling away.
Ben Raineri finished strong inside for the Green Wave, but then Walsh dished it over to Timbas who was cutting to the bucket for a layup. Then in transition it was Mackey dishing it over to Timbas for a layup, and-1. Walsh went hard to the rim for an and-1 finish on the fast-break. Evans helped keep Dover alive, hitting a 3 from way beyond the arc. Raineri drove and banked in a runner with just 1 second left in the quarter, and it was 50-40 Trinity after 3.
Trinity kept pushing their lead in the 4th quarter. Jordan Santos hit a long jumper from just inside the arc. Trickett took it hard to the rim for 2 more. Hendrickson answered for Dover, making a nice back door cut, getting the ball and finishing and-1. Mackey took a charge on 'D'. Then Walsh led the break, dishing it over to Mackey for an and-1 finish. Zach Dagan buried a 3-pointer to give the Pioneers a 63-46 lead with 4:15 left in regulation their largest lead of the contest).
Dover kept fighting out there to get back in the game and make the score more respectable. They did just that, ending the game on a 12-4 run. Coleman dished it to Nick Yerardi who was cutting to the rim for a layup. Then Yerardi drained a 3 from the right corner for a quick 7-0 run by the Green Wave out of a timeout. Evans drove, flipping it in for a tough shot. Trinity wins it 67-58.