Mt. Blue’s Jacob Farnham shoots over Gardiner’s Logan Carleton (24) and Kalvin Catchings (30) during Tuesday’s game in Farmington. Tony Blasi/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

FARMINGTON — Freshman Zach Poisson’s 10-point run was like a rallying cry for the Mt. Blue Cougars during a hard-fought fourth quarter.

The freshman went on a tear, scoring 10 straight points to help spearhead the Cougars’ 63-42 victory over the Gardiner Tigers on Tuesday night.

Poisson said he was just doing his job.

“We needed someone to pick it up,” Poisson said. “It was a close game by the half. The whole team played pretty good. We played pretty good defense all-around. Didn’t do the best in the first half, but we played with intensity.” 

Mt. Blue was holding on to a precarious 43-35 lead after three quarters, and the Tigers had their dander up.

But that’s when Poisson, in only his second high school game, started making moves to the basket. Poisson started off with a drive for two points and parlayed another layup into a three-point play.  

Poisson was just getting started with his offensive antics. He then took his chances from the perimeter and nailed a 3-pointer off the glass and scored on another drive to the net to score all of his 10 points in a couple of minutes.

“I don’t know how I made the one to be honest,” Poisson said. “I thought it was going to be long, but it went off the glass, but I am not sure how, though. How about them Cougars!”

The win is the first for first-year Mt. Blue coach Troy Norton. He said his best call of the night came unexpectedly.

“That would come under the best substitution I never made,” Norton said. “I had a guy at the scorer’s table waiting to go in for Zach because he had a turnover or something. So I didn’t take (Zach) out. Then he scored 10 straight points.

“I think we are a deep team. There were a bunch of different guys who could step up on any night. But we dug deep, got a few stops and Zach took over.”

“Our goal is just keep improving everyday. That’s what we are trying to do.”

Poisson’s outburst was followed by four points from Bradley Shamba, who scored a game-high 14 points and stood up for the Cougars inside the paint.

In the final few minutes, Hunter Donald added two points and Jacob Farnham threw in a 3-pointer for good measure.

Norton’s crew did indeed step up, with Hunter Meeks scoring 13 points and Camden Phillips adding 12.

Mt. Blue senior Bradley Shamba goes up with the ball as Gardiner’s Braden Dorogi (10) defends during Tuesday’s game in Farmington. Tony Blasi/ Sun Journal Buy this Photo

By halftime, the Cougars were holding onto a 30-20 lead, knowing all along that might not be enough against the Tigers. Jackson Tweedy threw in the team-high for Gardiner.

“We made a run at the third quarter, and I really proud of the way my team competed,” Gardiner coach Aaron Toman said. “In the fourth quarter, we are a young team and we made some young mistakes and turned the ball over a couple of times

“And they made a run and we didn’t make the run back, and it got away from us, but we competed throughout.”

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