Driving till the very end, GM boys lose by 2 to Rivendell

By Evan Chadwick
©2022 Telegraph Publishing LLC

Basketball can be brutal. At times, an inch here or there can make all the difference between a thrilling victory or a crushing defeat.

The Green Mountain boys basketball team endured such a result on Thursday night when, trailing by 2 with just seconds remaining, Brendan Rose’s 3-point attempt rolled off the front of the rim, allowing undefeated Rivendell to escape with a wild 50-48 victory in Chester.

“We proved we can play with anyone, ” said Coach Brian Rapanotti. “Of course we are disappointed that we came up short tonight.”

Everyone who attended the GM/Rivendell boys basketball contest last night in Chester knew it was going to be a battle of two well-coached, disciplined and offensive-minded teams. The abundance of fans filling the Green Mountain Gymnasium were not disappointed, especially when the Chieftains took the early lead by pounding the offensive glass, going on an early 5-0 run to start the contest.

As good teams do, Rivendell of Orford, N.H., responded, countering with an 8-0 run of their own that arose from some crisp back-door passing that led to four layups and, in a flash, GM was facing a 3-point deficit.

After a Kagan Hance 3-point play pulled Green Mountain even, the Raptors and Chieftains would both go on mini-runs, the last being a 6-0 run fueled by a 3-pointer by Hance that propelled Rapanotti’s squad into the first break leading 14-12.

The second quarter got ugly as Green Mountain struggled to solve the Rivendell zone press, which forced numerous turnovers.

The Chieftains would roar out of the gate in the third,
cutting the Raptor lead to 4 after an Everett Mosher pull-up.
From there Rivendell would go on an 11-2 run that had them
leading 37-26 entering the fourth quarter.

“We shot ourselves in the foot in the second quarter,” said Rapanotti. “We struggle when the play gets organized.”

The Chieftains went scoreless for 6 minutes, while Rivendell got hot from behind the arc that had them leading by 11 at 25-14, forcing Rapanotti to take a timeout.

Reid Hryckiewicz would get the Chieftains on the board with a 3-pointer in transition that cut the lead to 8. Unfortunately, it was the only points GM could muster, allowing Rivendell to enter halftime leading 27-17.

The Chieftains would roar out of the gate in the third, cutting the Raptor lead to 4 after an Everett Mosher pull-up. From there Rivendell would go on an 11-2 run that had them leading 37-26 entering the fourth quarter.

The Chieftains would find the touch from deep early in the fourth, hitting three 3-pointers, two from Everett Mosher and one from Branden Rose, pulling GM to within 5 at 42-37. After the teams traded baskets on their next possession, Everett Mosher would finish on an inbounds play drawn up by Coach Rapanotti to narrow the deficit to 2.

Rivendell would score the next 5 points to take a 7-point advantage with under 3 minutes remaining.

But GM simply would not fold. Rose hit back-to-back 3s on their next possessions, the second courtesy of some great hustle by Elias Stowell Aleman that saved a ball from going out-of-bounds, finding Rose at the top of the key.

GM would have several chances in their next couple of possessions to either tie the contest or take the outright lead, but the Chieftain treys were just off the mark. After Rivendell hit two free-throws to stretch the lead to 4, Rose hit another 3 with under a minute remaining to cut the lead to 1.

The Chieftain press almost turned the Raptors over but the Raptors were able to survive the scare when they hit one free throw that gave the Chieftains their last chance opportunity and Rose’s near miss that dropped the Chieftains to 9-6 on the season.

Everett Mosher led the Chieftains with 18 points, while Rose added 14, all in the fourth quarter.

The Chieftains are next in action when they travel to Townshend on Saturday, Feb. 12, where they face off with the Rebels of Leland & Gray. Tip time is slated for 2:30 p.m. The game can also be watched live by logging into the Leland & Gray Basketball YouTube channel by clicking here.

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Filed Under: BasketballEducation NewsSports News

About the Author: Originally from Rochester, Vermont, Evan Chadwick is a practicing attorney who lives in Brattleboro with his family. He is a 2007 graduate of Keene State College and currently coaches the boys' varsity basketball team at Bellows Falls Union High School.

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