During Sunday’s Cushing NEPSAC AA Classic Invitational, the Cushing Varsity Boys’ Basketball team hosted the Wapiti of Winchendon School in the Watkins Field House. It was the first half of a home-and-home series between the Route 12 rivals and the gym was packed with fans from both schools.
Cushing started the game by jumping out to an early 12 point lead, but Winchendon was not going down that easily. The Wapiti responded with stifling defense and explosive offensive shooting power to bring the game to within three points at the halftime break. It was Winchendon who headed into the locker room at the break holding the 36-33 lead as they rode an impressive first half shooting performance by their point guard, Jay Rogers, who put up 18 points in the half.
Despite the halftime break interrupting the Winchendon point guard’s shooting streak, he continued to hit difficult shots over the Cushing defense in the second half and he ended the game by torching the Penguins for 36 points. Although this was a great performance by Rogers, the Penguins held the remaining Wapiti to very few points in the second half to allow the Penguins to get back into an offensive groove. The contributions of multiple Penguins pushed them into a comfortable lead, which they held throughout the majority of the second half. With seven members of the Cushing team contributing to the point tally, it was a true team effort. The high scorers on the day for the Penguins were Dan Braster ‘20 and Isaiah Gray ‘20 with 14 points apiece. The spread scoring amongst the Cushing players was the result of sharing the ball in transition and in the half court in order to capitalize in every way possible. This capitalization by the Penguins meant they took a 72-58 win on their home court in front of a rambunctious crowd.
Scoring for the Penguins -
Dan Braster ‘20 - 14 points
Isaiah Gray ‘20 - 14 points
Bensley Joseph ‘21 - 13 points
Toby Okani ‘20 - 11 points
Alexis Matos-Reyes ‘21 - 10 points
Coby Gold ‘20 - 6 points
Malachi Ndur ‘20 - 4 points
The teams will switch home courts on Wednesday, January 29th when the Penguins make the hop, skip, and jump down Route 12 to Winchendon’s court for a 3:00pm game.
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Cushing Academy exists for students and develops curious, creative, and confident learners and leaders. Founded in 1865, Cushing is a co-ed, college preparatory boarding and day school for students in grades 9-12 and PG. Our students, who come from over 30 states and 30 countries, excel in our outstanding academic, art, and athletic offerings. We welcome you to visit our community and beautiful 162-acre campus in Ashburnham, Mass., just one hour from Boston, to experience all that Cushing has to offer.