BANGOR —Last season, the Ellsworth High School boys basketball team handled Winslow fairly easily in the preliminary round of the Class B North tournament. With a rematch in the quarterfinals Friday night at the Cross Insurance Center, Ellsworth senior Jackson Curtis expected a much closer game.

“They’re a great team, one through five,” Curtis said.

Curtis was right. It was a much closer game, but the 2020 result was the same as 2019. No. 2 Ellsworth held off a pesky Winslow team to take a 58-51 win. The Eagles (16-3) will take on No. 3 Washington Academy in the semifinals Wednesday. No. 7 Winslow ends the season at 12-8.

Down 52-49 with the ball and a chance to tie, Winslow turned the ball over with 36.4 seconds left. Ellsworth (16-3) made six free throws in the final minute to seal the win.

“We wanted to try to extend it into the fourth quarter and stay within shouting distance of them. We know they have a lot of firepower,” Winslow coach Ken Lindlof said. “It was a question of, could we make a little bit of a run on our own, and could we hold them down? At the end, we had some empty possessions and they were just two strong for us inside.”

Pounding the ball inside throughout the second half helped the Eagles hold off the Black Raiders, and rally t reclaim the lead after Winslow took a 45-42 lead early in the fourth quarter on a Reid Gagnon layup.

“Working the ball inside. When the threes are falling for us, that’s when we’re really deadly, but when they’re not, we pound the ball inside and get easy shots,” Curtis, who scored a game-high 26 points, said.

“Obviously, Jackson Curtis is a handful. I thought we defended him. We made him earn every point,” Lindlof said.

Winslow trailed 39-33 late in the third quarter, but got a spark from sophomore Nick Girard, who came off the bench and hit a pair of threes in the final minute and a half of the third. Girard’s second three capped an 8-0 Winslow run and gave the Black Raiders a 41-39 lead. An old fashioned three point play by Curtis gave the Eagles a 42-41 lead going into the fourth.

“(Girard) can do that. That’s not a surprise. He’s been working his way into playing time because he can do that,” Lindlof said.

Senior Colby Pomeroy led Winslow with 19 points, just a few shy of 1,000 for his career. Lindlof praised Pomeroy’s leadership is helping a young team improve and develop into a tournament contender.

“He took these kids and forged a team, and that was really a big difference,” Lindlof said.

Curtis said Ellsworth knew Pomeroy was a dangerous opponent.

“He’s a great player. One of the toughest we had to play against,” Curtis said.

Darby Berry scored 12 points for Ellsworth, including a pair of 3-pointers in the third quarter that helped the Eagles build a lead. Jake Berard had seven points for Winslow.

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

Twitter: @TLazarczykMTM

 

 

 

 

 

 

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