READFIELD — On the list of reasons Maranacook won nine of its first 10 games this season, shooting accuracy ranked quite low.

The Black Bears may have reached a season-low when they shot just 20 percent in the first half of Friday night’s Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B game with Winslow. They came out for the second half determined to take the ball to the basket and prevent the Black Raiders from doing the same.

Kent Mohlar scored 14 of his game-high 22 points and Jason Brooks 10 of his 12 points in the second half to lead Maranacook to a 57-48 win.

“We’re finding ways to win,” Brooks said. “We know if our shooting’s not on we’ve got to kick up the defense and get fast break opportunities and get to the rim.”

Mohlar also had 11 rebounds and three steals, while Kyle Wilbur added 11 points and six rebounds for the Black Bears (10-1). Dylan Hutchinson led the Black Raiders (8-4) with 13 points and five rebounds while Keanu Earle and Trenton Bouchard added nine points apiece.

Brooks kicked off a game-deciding 11-2 Maranacook run with a three-point play that put Maranacook in front for good, 41-40, with 6:05 left. The senior guard scored eight of his 12 points from the foul line.

“Coach really talked about getting the ball and pushing it down the court and getting to the basket as quickly as possible,” Brooks said.

“We actually talked to Jason (Thursday) night at practice about taking more shots because he hasn’t been taking enough,” Maranacook coach Rob Schmidt said. “It was his determination to drive to the basket tonight instead of settling for threes. But we definitely need him involved. We need everyone involved, and tonight was his night.”

Mohlar kept the momentum in Maranacook’s favor with a steal and layup immediately after Brooks’ three-point play.

While the Black Bears’ halfcourt pressure and 1-2-2 zone forced some key turnovers, they handled Winslow’s press with aplomb down the stretch. Brooks beat the press for a layup to make it 47-40 midway through the fourth. Bouchard finally broke up Maranacook’s 9-0 run with a jumper, but Mohlar answered with back-to-back hoops to make it a nine-point game with 1:45 to go.

Maranacook had just six turnovers all night, compared to 13 for Winslow.

“The other thing they did really well was attacking the middle,” Winslow coach Jared Browne said. “We gave up way too much of the middle in the second half. They got to the foul line and we continued to settle for jump shots that weren’t dropping.”

In the first quarter, it was Winslow that was getting the ball to the rim and got to the foul line to open up a 14-10 lead. Maranacook struggled to get any offense going aside from Mohlar’s eight points and shot 7-for-35 in the half. But a 9-2 advantage on the offensive boards helped keep the Bears in the game despite shooting 2-for-19 from the field in the second quarter.

“They were good shots. I still think our shot selection is just fine. They just weren’t going in,” Schmidt said.

The Black Bears switched to a 1-2-2 zone in the second quarter to shut down Winslow’s lanes to the hoops and both teams struggled to get any shots to fall. Winslow led 21-18 at the half.

“We knew the scouting report was they like to get to the rim so we have to keep them out of the paint, and then close on their shooters,” Brooks said.

“We seemed to get on a little role defensively and we really were trying to attack the basket more,” Schmidt said. “Before the game even started, I told the guys that was one of the keys, to keep them out of the paint on their dribble drive. We did a poor job of that in the first quarter, so we put the zone in.”

Randy Whitehouse — 621-5638

[email protected]

Twitter: @RAWmaterial33

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