GARDINER — Medomak Valley senior Nicholas DePatsy has played a key role in a pair of Class B regional championships in two of the past three years, and Friday night the 6-foot-3 forward showed there is no substitute for experience.

DePatsy scored a game-high 28 points as the Panthers held off Gardiner 57-41 in front of a full house at John A. Bragoli Memorial Gymnasium.

The Tigers (5-4) rotated defenders against DePatsy, who connected on three of his four 3-pointers in the first quarter. Gardiner held its only lead when Brian Dunn connected on a baseline jumper for the game’s first basket. After that it was DePatsy with help from senior guards Brandon Douglas, a transfer from Gardiner, Zach Starr, junior forward Kyle Donlin and 6-6 center Cameron Allaire.

“I come off screens a lot and I can shoot off the dribble,” DePatsy said. “When I’m shooting like I did tonight, it’s good.”

DePatsy connected on his first four 3-point attempts, two of them catch and shoot jobs off inbounds plays.

“They’re going to work everything through him,” Gardiner coach Jason Cassidy said. “We couldn’t get the ball out of his hands. We started Cole Heaberlin on him tonight to play defense on him and changed our offense a little bit. We just couldn’t make any shots.”

The Tigers shot just 8 of 21 from the floor in the first half and finished the game 13 of 34. Senior Jordan Lamb finished with a team-high 17 points and eight rebounds, but had trouble finishing around the basket in the early going. Still Gardiner hung tough, trailing 15-11 at the first quarter break. They scored just six points in the second quarter and didn’t make a field goal until there was 1 minute, 51 seconds left in the half.

“We’re building,” said Medomak coach Nick DePatsy, whose team is 7-3, all of those losses close and on the road.”We’ve had a lot of success the last few years. We’re starting to come together defensively. This is a good win. We finally played a complete game.”

The Tigers trailed 38-29 entering the fourth quarter and cut the lead to six (38-32) on a Hunter Chasse free throw and layup from Eli Fish. But DePatsy answered with a pair of driving shots off the dribble to restore the lead to 11 early in the quarter and the Tigers never recovered. Donlin added nine points for the Panthers while Gardiner sophomore Isaiah Magee played well defensively and contributed seven points. Gardiner’s problems were exacerbated by six fourth-quarter turnovers.

“We missed a bunch of foul shots (14 for 24),” Cassidy said. “The kids played hard, they’ve just got to execute.”


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