TOWNSHEND -- When Woodstock closed an 11-point gap in the second quarter to take a small lead at the half, after Leland & Gray had kept them scoreless for five minutes, the Rebel crowd was stunned.
But their worries were short-lived and hopes became reignited, when the home team came back to life in the third, to outscore the visitors by 15 points, which allowed them to stay ahead through the fourth, and beat Woodstock, 63-49, Friday night.
During that electric third quarter, Drew Barnum strung together a series of 3-pointers for the Rebs, and Michael Bergeron added six points, to give the team a 24-9 run that gave them a 47-33 advantage before the fourth.
It was 14-10 after the first quarter, with Barnum throwing down six points, and Bergeron, Billy Nupp, and Jake Sherman going to the inside for a few extra buckets. Barnum had 22 points, a season-high for the team, and Bergeron finished with 17 points, to lead the team in scoring.
Nupp had seven points, including two layups off of steals.
"We usually play a more balanced approach on offense, but lately, Barnum has just been on fire," said Leland & Gray coach Andy Nystrom.
Dougie Avellino scored half of Woodstock’s points during the first quarter, splashing in the game’s first downtown shot in the process. He and Connor Fegard did damage on the boards, which helped the team come back from a minor deficit.
Fegard went away with 14 points, and teammate Reid Langona had 15. Avellino led the Wasps with 18 points.
Poor passing led to Leland & Gray’s second quarter drought, and Avellino nailed two 3’s, plus two from the line, to give Woodstock a hard-earned 24-23 lead at break time. Sherman went away with six points in the second, and spread his scoring out, to total 13 on the evening.
"I told them what they needed to do, to establish who was the dominant team," said Nystrom. "We’ve got the inside-outside game. Just needed to clean up a few things."
After the Wasps got hip to the Rebels’ inside shooting, they forced them outside, but the hosts quickly adjusted to command the pace for the remainder of the contest.
The 10-2 Rebels play three games next week, and will start by hosting Otter Valley on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.
David Aquino can be reached at email@example.com, or by calling 802-254-2311, ext. 164.