Old Lyme boys reach Class S semis for first time
Terryville - Old Lyme's George Logan was standing at the foul line with 50.8 seconds left in what was a two-point game Monday night.
It was then the public address announcer chose to announce that Terryville's Tyler Trillo had scored his 1,000th career point on the possession before.
Logan turned around and shook Trillo's hand before returning to hit the first of his two free throw attempts.
Logan, in fact, did everything in the fourth quarter against Terryville, finishing with 18 points during that span, 30 overall, to assure the No. 5 Wildcats a 66-60 victory over No. 4 Terryville in the quarterfinals of the Class S state boys' basketball tournament.
Old Lyme led by 12 at halftime on the strength of five 3-pointers, lost the lead in the third quarter and then held on as Terryville responded with five 3-pointers in the second half.
The Wildcats (20-6) will now face No. 25 Weaver (11-12) in the semifinals at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Maloney High School in Meriden, making this Old Lyme team the first in program history to reach the semifinals, according to athletic director Rob Roach.
"We look for whoever's open. No one's looking to be the showboat," Logan, a senior, said of Old Lyme's team dynamic. "Our starting five's been playing together since the sixth grade."
"Unreal," said fellow senior Matti Fuller. "When he says it's like no other team, it really is like that."
Old Lyme, which lost the lead with two and a half minutes remaining in the third quarter when Terryville's Jacob Johnson completed a three-point play, got it back to end the quarter on an off-balance jump shot by Logan. That gave the Wildcats a 40-38.
Old Lyme's Danny Chapman scored to start the fourth quarter. After that, Logan scored 13 straight points, on a spin move driving the lane, two three-point plays, an inbounds play and a 3-pointer. That flurry gave the Wildcats a 55-51 edge with 2:51 to go and Old Lyme went 9-for-10 from the foul line in the final 1:20 - five by Logan, two by Paul Burdick and two by Slater Gregory - as Terryville furiously attempted a comeback.
Old Lyme also won its second-round game Saturday in dramatic fashion, beating No. 12 Nonnewaug of Woodbury 66-59 in overtime after overcoming a 15-point deficit in the third quarter.
"We came out on fire in the first half (against Terryville) and got a lead which is rare for us," Old Lyme coach Kirk Kaczor said. "In the third quarter (Terryville was) firing it and hitting. We knew from our scouting report they had guys that could shoot the ball. In the third quarter, boy did they shoot the ball."
That led to Logan's fourth-quarter barrage. To appreciate his bravado, however, it helps to understand Logan's selflessness.
"On senior night, we have six seniors, he asked me if he could not start," Kaczor said of Logan, who like his talented sisters before him will forgo sports in college to focus on academics, heading to the University of South Carolina. "He said, 'Let the other guys start. I've started enough times.'"
Yet the Wildcats also know their teammate can get the job done in the clutch.
"That was game time for George," Kaczor said. "He's pretty much a pressure guy. When it's time to step up, it's time to step up. George is a ballplayer; he starts to feel it. But he goes with the flow. He doesn't talk a lot."
"My team trusts me with the ball and they were having trouble stopping me," Logan said of the fourth quarter.
Logan smiled when asked if shooting free throws in the second half was more difficult, as he was facing a boisterous, orange-clad Terryville student section.
"I actually like it," said Logan, who was 12-for-14 from the line in all. "It's more of a challenge. As long as I don't make eye contact …"
Fuller finished with 11 points and Gregory and Andrew Tyrol had nine each. Old Lyme was 22-for-27 from the foul line.
Trillo had 23 points for Terryville and Johnson had 20.
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