Red Hook burned the visiting Rondout Valley Ganders on Feb. 4, sending them back across the river with a 68-32 loss. It took some time for the Raiders to get clicking, though, until a breakway third quarter showing.
The Raiders were on the board first, on a buzzer-beating, lucky-roll three by Nolan Dalton in the first minute. Dalton. It was the first of many Red Hook treys in the game: the team collected 10 baskets from beyond the arc to account for 30 points. Paddy Parr drained another Red Hook three at 2:55 to put Red up 10-6; they left the quarter up 13-8.
It was a big night for Parr, who led the game in scoring with 16 points, nine of which came on threes.
“I thought I played sloppy in the first half, but in the second half we got the ball to me and I could make good decisions around that,” Parr told the Observer after the game.
Nick Michitsch opened the second quarter scoring campaign for the Raiders at 5:58 with a three. Red spent the brunt of the first half of the quarter firing from beyond the paint to counter the Ganders’ considerable height, and had trouble keeping Rondout off the stripe. Fortunately, it didn’t matter too much, because Rondout only managed to sink seven of 17 free throws.
In the third, the Raiders’ press started moving perfectly, and they began to pour in transition buckets instead of posting shots from outside. Things got chippy, though, within the first two minutes as a pair of minor tussles on inbounds plays — one in particular between Red Hook’s Dennis Hare and Rondout’s Ethan Deforest — prompted intervention from the referees and some heightened tension from Red Hook head coach Matt Hayes.
“They’re two guys that are confident players, and they started to get a little physical,” Hayes told the Observer. “The officials maybe saw it one way and maybe we saw it another, but the good news is, it didn’t go beyond that and we just kept playing.
The quarter drew to a close with a crowd-pleasing defensive stand, as Michitsch broke for a bucket on a fast break on a steal at 1:22, and was immediately followed at 1:13 by Hare, who had a steal-to-layup combo of his own.
Hayes plugged in some of the bench for the final quarter, but Red didn’t let up on the scoring front, and managed to drop 23 points on the Ganders with most of the second team on the floor. Raider Thomas D’Angelo iced Red Hook’s night with a flying and-1 play to give the Raiders their final score of 68.
“I thought it took us a long while to get going. But the game at times was a little chippy, and maybe that was what got us going,” said Hayes. “We were flat for whatever reason, early…But I really liked how we finished.”
With the win, Red Hook improves to 10-3.