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Stoughton Boys' Basketball Team Falls to Randolph in Blue Devil Classic

Stoughton's Mike Gallagher was named to the Blue Devil Classic All-Tournament Team.
Stoughton's Mike Gallagher was named to the Blue Devil Classic All-Tournament Team.
They weren't any teeth pulled, but the Stoughton High boys' basketball team wasn't feeling too good after losing to Randolph, 51-45, in the final game of the Blue Devil Classic Monday night.

"The whole game felt like a trip to the dentist," said Stoughton head coach John Gallivan. "Even when we had the lead, it wasn't going well. We had so many empty trips. You get about 100 possessions in a game and if you're not getting shots on 30-percent of them, something is going to go wrong in the end and obviously did."

For three quarters, the Black Knights bottled up the Randolph offense, holding the Blue Devils to just 25 points. Randolph, though, scored 26 points in the final frame and that provided to be the difference.

Randolph head coach Kalon Jenkins, a former Black Knight assistant, made the subsitution of the night, bringing senior Bryant Brezill of the bench to play in the front. All the senior center did was score 12 of his 14 points in the fourth quarter, giving the Blue Devils the spark they needed off the bench. What else Brezil also did was to give Randolph a big man to counter the Black Knights' advantage in the front court.

"I think eight of his 12 fourth quarter points were on missed box outs," said Gallivan. "We're not good enough to allow that to happen. He was great (and) a big presence out there. You have your hands full with Fritiz (Oslyn) and (Fred) Epps and to throw that in there, that was the tipping point

'He (Brezil came into the game and carved out a space that he owned."

The Blue Devils were trailing, 34-25, going into the fourth quarter, but Randolph went on a 13-2 at the start to take the lead and eventually, the tourney crown.

Joey Willder was the top scorer for the Black Knights with a 22-point effort, being named to the All-Tournament Team. Dennis Rebelo added six points, while Mike Manning, who was also named to the tournament all-star team, had five and Stanley Sajous also added five. Epps, who was the tournament MVP with 19 points.

"I told the guys no one has to get 20 this year, but I need three or four guys to get 10," said Gallivan. "We didn't have that tonight, but credit has to go to Randolph's defense and the way there is always someone there pressuring you.

"It wasn't even the full court press, they just do a great job with their half-court pressure. Nothing is ever comfortable. With the exception of Joey Wilder, who just kind has an own internal shot clock, a lot of our guys were backing away from it instead of fighting the pressure with pressure and ripping through. That's to their credit. Kalon has them playing a brand that's very suited to their athleticism."

While the Black Knights would have liked to have exited with a win, Gallivan did think his benefit from playing in the Blue Devil Classic, which featured a DJ playing during the break and a loud crowd on both sides.

"This is a great environment," he said. "The crowd is loud and really into it. I feel like I have been to a concert."

Stoughton will get back to Hockomock League action when they play at Franklin Friday night.

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