_learned a lesson about home court advantage Tuesday night, as a red hot Chelmsford High team burnt the Redmen from long distance _ this time taking a 64-55 victory.
"They shot great," __ "We gave them good looks and that's a good shooting team, they're gonna make them. Every time we made our run they seemed to make a huge three."
Unlike the first meeting, Chelmsford gained the early advantage by riding the hot hand of senior guard Corey Everleigh, who scored 15 of his team-high 18 points in the first half. The Redmen, meanwhile, came out looking like they were still shaking off the affects of Friday's 93-45 loss to Central Catholic, and fell behind, 30-15, midway through the second quarter.
"We started out looking like we had a hangover from the last game," Conners said. "We did a great job coming back (in the second half), but when you fall that far behind, you have to play perfect to get back into it."
Senior forward Sean Foley scored nine of his 11 points in the second quarter as Tewksbury trimmed the Chelmsford lead to 10 at the half. The Redmen found their shooting touch in the third quarter and outscored the Lions 15-8, cutting the lead to three points going into the final frame. Sophomore guard Kevin Dick was the catalyst for the Tewksbury comeback. Dick scored 14 of his career-high 20 points in the second half, hitting a pair of three-pointers and driving the lane for several critical baskets.
"Kevin's really learning to shoot the ball," Conners said of Dick. "He played really well. Offensively he was awesome. He's really come a long way. For a sophomore, he's had an unbelievable year. He's exceeded my expectations."
Unfortunately for the Redmen, every time Dick found the basket, Chelmsford sixth man Voshon Holmes had an answer. Holmes came off the bench and caught fire in the fourth quarter, scoring all of his 11 points in the final eight minutes, almost singlehandedly holding off the Tewksbury comeback attempt.
Tewksbury closed the Lion lead down to a single point, at 49-48, with 4:21 to play, but Holmes tossed in five straight points to restore the Chelmsford lead to six, and Tewksbury never came closer than down four after that.
"You gotta give our kids credit for the comeback," Conners said. "They were down 15 at one point and got it to one. We just never could get over the hump."
_ and _ for the Redmen, while Anthony Chiccarelli added four. Brett Harrington had 14 points and led Chelmsford in rebounding, while Eric Van Gelder added 10 for the Lions.
Tewksbury falls to 6-11 on the year, but the Redmen can still qualify for an MIAA Division 2 state tournament berth by simply beating Dracut at home this Friday night.
"It's a big game," Conners said. "It's senior night and we can clinch the state tournament with a win. We just gotta put this one behind us and pick up our execution."