On the road for the first time in February, young Derryfield more than held its own against Newmarket, the defending Division IV co-champion and pre-season-tabbed favorite to win D IV again this season.
Newmarket jumped out to a quick lead, but the Cougars settled down, and pulled within two hoops of the Mules late in the fourth quarter before falling by a final score of 49-37. After Newmarket put a 7-0 lead on the scoreboard, Jack Krasnof and Thomas Ferdinando scored for Derryfield. But the home team ran off a second 7-point spree to lead 14-4 at the end of the first quarter.
In the second quarter, senior co-captain Jaxon Snyder sparked Derryfield with 10 straight points. He drove and scored. He grabbed an offensive rebound and flipped it in for another 2. And he followed up his work inside with a pair of 3-pointers from the left wing. John McDevitt’s deuce from the left baseline cut the Newmarket lead to 22-16 going into the halftime break.
Despite third quarter 3-pointers from Thomas and Kaven Fitch, and an inside hoop from Griff Johnson, the Mules had increased their lead to 34-27 going into the fourth quarter. But junior co-captain Janai Cruz opened the period with a driving layup, and John followed a single Mule foul shot with a 3-pointer for the Cougars. Another driving score by Janai, and then his assist to Jack inside cut the Newmarket lead to 38-34 with two minutes to play.
But the home team held off the Derryfield challenge with a closing 11-3 run. Jaxon led the Cougars with 10 points. Janai and Jack each tallied 6, and Thomas and John each scored 5. The return match at Derryfield was cancelled due to a positive Covid test result at Newmarket.