|Minutes after Avon’s 55-52 loss to Randolph of Section VI in the Class C state quarterfinals at Buffalo State Saturday, Brandon Freeman shook his head.|
The senior forward wasn’t as upset about the fact that the Braves lost as he was miffed about the way they lost.
“We just couldn’t hit anything,” said Freeman, whose team shot just 31.6 percent from the field. “If we would have played like we usually do, we could’ve won. But we didn’t.”
Randolph jumped to a 21-9 lead behind 11 points from forward J.D. Redington, who drained three 3-pointers and a long jumper in the quarter.
“(Redington) couldn’t miss,” Freeman said. “I was in his face a couple of times and he just didn’t miss.”
While Redington couldn’t miss, Avon missed a lot. In the first 12 minutes of the game, the Braves converted just three of their first 18 shots.
Greg McKeown ended Avon’s six-minute stretch without a field goal when he hit a 3-pointer with 3:40 left in the first half.
The basket ignited an 11-2 Avon run that helped the Braves pull within 28-22 at halftime.
Avon (18-7) quickly cooled off again in the second half, going scoreless for 5:30 as Randolph (22-2), which is in Cattaraugus County, built a 45-29 lead.
“We weren’t running through our sets and we were forcing up bad shots,” said Greg Stanton, who finished with 10 points.
With six minutes left, Avon finally got its offense going. Freeman, who finished with eight points, hit two layups and McKeown (14 points) made two 3-pointers during a 16-5 run that pulled the Braves within 50-45 with 2:15 left.
Randolph, however, held on by hitting free throws down the stretch.
Redington, who was plagued by foul trouble in the second half, finished with 15 points.
“(Randolph) was just too much for us,” said Avon coach John Roberts. “When you shoot 25, 28 percent, you’re not going to win too many games.”