The Bonnabel Bruins got off to a fast start before faltering some against West Jefferson. But in the end, the Bruins got on track and got the job done.
TJ Collins scored 18 points, Will Allen added 15 and Bonnabel defeated West Jefferson 67-57 to advance to the semifinals of the Purple Knight Classic.
The Bruins hold the lead until surrendering it with 2:41 left in the game when Warren Jones’ 3 pointer put West Jefferson ahead 40-37. The Bruins regained the lead with 5:42 remaining with Warren’s layup and held on to it the rest of the way. Bonnabel coach Glenn Dyer said his team could have played better offensively but was proud they pulled together for the win.
“Some games you just don’t have it on the offensive end,” he said. “But we battled defensively, we had three or four stops in a row and got a seven or eight-point lead (in the fourth quarter) and that was the turning point.”
Warren, who fouled out in the fourth quarter, was also happy about his team’s effort.
“I feel good,” he said. “I wasn’t supposed to foul out but my team stepped up and did a great job to get us the win.”
West Jefferson battled hard despite missing some key players, coach Kevin Hunt said.
“I told my team that they fought hard,” he said. “But it’s all about being professional. One of my key players didn’t bring his uniform, and I wasn’t going to take one away from someone else so he didn’t get to play. We’re also missing a starter who broke his wrist the second game of the season, so I told them it was all about being professional.”
“Bonnabel is a good team. We get to see them again in district play, and we should be 100 percent come district play so we’ll see them then.”
It was all Bonnabel early as it built up leads of 18-13 at the end of the first quarter and 30-25 at halftime. West Jefferson took the lead on Jefferson’s 3-pointer and held on until Warren’s fourth quarter basket. The basket was the first of three in a row for Warren, leading the Bruins on a 10-0 run to take a seven-point lead. Warren fouled out with 4:05 remaining after a confusing set of circumstances.
“We had (Warren) with one foul at halftime. All of a sudden he had two, and they said he had four in the book,” Dyer said. “So I felt there was some miscommunications, but you have to battle through those situations and we did well.”
The Bruins didn’t miss a beat after losing Warren as Allen and his teammates picked up the slack, resulting in a double-digit win and a trip to the tournament semifinals.