Dracut: The Malden Golden Tornadoes boys basketball team now stands just one victory away from the state tournament following a hard fought 49-39 victory at Dracut. Junior guard Terrance Maisonneuve scored 21 points and junior tri-captain Rodney Morton chipped in with 11 to secure the team's ninth win to even their record at 9-9.
"I'm proud of the team's effort tonight." Head coach Don Nally said after the win. "It was senior night for them, hostile crowd and we fell behind late but found a way to dig this one out."
Malden fell behind 17-10 after one quarter before settling in and taking a 25-21 lead at the half. In the third quarter the Tornadoes went ice cold, scoring just five points to trail 34-30 entering the fourth quarter with their season on the line.
The Tornadoes turned to their pressing unit led by Morton and juniors Tommy Steele and Wily Metellus. Metellus scored all four of his six points in the quarter to go along with 2 steals and three assists. Steele chipped in with a steal and two big rebounds down the stretch as the tram held Dracut to just five 4th quarter points. Maisonneuve scored 10 points in the quarter and senior tri-captain Witche Exilhomme hit two big free throws down the stretch to secure the win.
Malden now heads to the Woburn Shoot-out tournament and a date with Salem high school on Sunday to try and secure a state tournament berth.
"Our goal was to make the state tournament and we put ourselves in position to do that." Nally said as his team tries to make the tournament for the fifth time in his eight seasons as head coach.