The Barrington High School boys’ basketball team showed its grit Thursday night, grinding out a hard fought 42-40 win over Mt. Pleasant in the state open tournament prelims.
“We never thought for a second we were going to lose this basketball game,” said head coach Patrick Sullivan following the victory.
While the Eagles fell behind off an 8-0 Mt. Pleasant run to start the game, Barrington worked its way back throughout the first half. Barrington clawed back to within two off senior guard Jesse Browne’s three-pointer with about 2:40 left in the half.
The Eagles tied things up about a minute later off a close field goal by junior center Nicholas Raymond. It was a crucial shot for Barrington but only the first in a series of big scores for Raymond.
Freshman Colin Vatter netted a three in the waning seconds of the first half and Barrington entered intermission with a one-point lead.
Both sides took control of the game at points during the second half, trading the lead back and forth a handful of times. Barrington fought back to within one with just under four minutes remaining following a Raymond three-point-play.
Raymond sunk a pair of free throws about one minute later to tie the game before tossing back a quick rebound to put Barrington ahead by two.
On defense, Raymond blocked a shot with 1:20 remaining and, in the waning seconds of regulation, fought off a pair of Mt. Pleasant players for a tough rebound that essentially sealed the deal.
“Nick Raymond came in huge in the second half, an inside presence,” Sullivan said. He also pointed to the contributions of other players who haven’t seen a lot of minutes this year, such as Vatter.
“We did a great job. There’s nothing else you could say.”
Sullivan said Barrington wanted to keep the game in the 40s. He added that group’s ability to hang in throughout the seesaw battle is indicative of their effort all year.
“We have character. We never quit. We work hard,” Sullivan said.
Raymond finished as Barrington’s leading scorer with 15 ahead of Brown with 10.
Barrington plays again this Sunday morning, 11:30 a.m. at Providence College’s Alumni Hall against North Kingstown.