Wildcats offense erupts in back to back wins

Westport blows out Atlantic Charter school, 66-50, and Diman 68-48

Photos and story by Richard W Dionne Jr
Posted 1/14/20

Westport hoopsters blow out Atlantic Charter school, 66-50

Look to begin league play this week

Photos and story by Richard W Dionne Jr

The Westport basketball team erupted for 24 fourth …

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Wildcats offense erupts in back to back wins

Westport blows out Atlantic Charter school, 66-50, and Diman 68-48

Posted

The Westport basketball team erupted for 24 fourth quarter points as they blew out Atlantic Charter School, 66-50, during a home game on Wednesday night. The Wildcats also crushed Diman, 68-48, at Diman on Friday. The wins boosts the team’s record to 6-2 as they look to begin league play on Wednesday, 1/15/20, at 2 p.m. at Sacred Heart.

“We were working hard,” said point guard Aidan Rock (18 points). “We were absent of one of our best players Connor Lecomte (foot injury) and we all knew that we had to step up. We’ve been working on our bench intensity all season. Today it really showed.”

Carving out their 5th win against Atlantic looked grim for Westport early in the game. The larger and more athletic Atlantic team cruised out to an 11-3 lead with 3 minutes to play in the first quarter on three pointers by Sean Murphy, Cody Cordeiro and Jacob Farias.

“Our shooting was terrible in the first half,” said Westport Head Coach Scot Boudria. “We couldn’t put the ball in the ocean.”

Coach Boudria quickly called a time out. Pep band director Chris Nunes with sax in hand, led the band in Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger,” and the home crowd cheered as the Wildcats took the floor after the break.

Coach Boudria turned on the switch and what the Wildcats lacked in size, they made up with well coached skills, strategy, determination and heart.

“When your down by ten in the first 4 or 5 minutes. You better change what you’re doing and hope that it starts to work sooner than later,” coach Boudria said.

The Wildcats jump started their ferocious style of press defense with Aidan Rock at the point and Aidan Viveiros at two guard, hijacking anyone who dribbled up court. Max Mendell and Domanic Viterino at forward helped out center Nick Payne defend under the Westport basket. Payne became a beast on the boards, at times ripping the ball out of the opponent’s hands and laying it up for two.

The frenzied Wildcats forced turnover after turnover, though they still had trouble hitting the basket.

Then Viveiros hit his first three pointer with 2:31 left in the first quarter to make the score 6-13, Atlantic.

Rock got to the foul line off a fast break and sunk one. Mendell and Viterino each netted jumpers and the Wildcats walked off the floor after the first quarter with a 14-13 lead, capped by a second Viveiros three pointer at the buzzer.

The Wildcats turned up the intensity in the second quarter and extended their lead, 28-22, at halftime. Viveiros stayed hot, hitting a three pointer and a jumper for 5 points. Viterino, Payne, Donje Raiche and Hunter Brodeur each netted 2 points.

Rock said that the team keeps up their stamina by running a lot during practice.

“We do a drill called zig-zags, a defensive slide with the ball. Another drill called roll it, we do six of them. We shoot free throws when we’re super tired. As soon as we mess up a drill, we run suicides with the balls,” Rock said. “Coach knows what he’s doing. We are very well coached.”

Second half

Atlantic’s Greg Cohill and Murphy came out hot and quickly tied the score 30-30 with 3:59 left in the third quarter.

Payne put back a layup and broke the tie, 32-30 with 3:32 left in the third period.

Atlantic tied the game 32-32.

Atlantic got a Wildcats rebound and headed up court to take the lead, but Viveiros stole a pass, dribbled and came flying through the lane, right arm with the ball stretched out as he laid the ball up and in for two, to give Westport a 34-32 lead with 2:54 left in the third quarter.

The Viveiros steal energized the team as Westport’s press-fast break combo really got rolling. Aidan Rock was the primary beneficiary as he cashed in, scoring 16 second half points.

“Aidan benefitted from his position in the press and from his teammates that were in back of him,” coach Boudria said. “Payne, Viterino, Raiche, Viveiros, Max Powers and Max Mendell, all had assists that contributed to Aidan’s 18 points.”

Some were easy for Rock as he sprinted in for layups. And others weren’t as he got to the foul line five times. The Wildcats had leads of 46-37 and 50-39.

Max Mendell hit a pair of free throws to put Westport up 61-43 with 3:48 left and the gym went wild as coach Boudria called off the dogs and took out Rock, Viterino and Payne.

“The one thing that the team did well was they kept working really hard, said coach Boudria, “They listened really well and I was happy with the effort.”

Westport scoring: Aidan Rock scored 18 points, Aidan Viveiros scored 16, Max Mendell scored 8, Domanic Viterino scored 6, Nick Payne scored 5, Max Powers scored 5, Hunter Brodeur scored 2, Aaron Piva scored 2, Liam Strangis scored 2, and Donje Raiche scored 2.

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A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.