Last season, one of the Norwood Pirates’ few disappointments from a Final Four season came when they entered the Mansfield Tournament, but were unable to secure the program’s first event title when they lost to Willow Springs in the finals. Fast forward nearly one year to the day and Norwood found themselves once again in a match-up with the Bears in the championship game.
Fortunately, there simply was no stopping the Pirates this time in reaching their goal as they crushed Willow Springs, 56-42, to win the Mansfield Tournament championship reportedly for the first time in program history. Willow Springs had just been named the No. 8 seed in the upcoming Blue & Gold Tournament.
“They’re a really good club,” said Norwood head coach Shane Chadwell about the Bears. “Last year’s game helped us win this year’s game.”
Chadwell noted that his squad was aware of the Bears’ ability to make runs. While they did have a few, Norwood was able to hold their composure together and eventually run away from Willow Springs by the end of the finals.
The game opened with Norwood’s 6-0 run followed by a Bears’ 5-0 run.
Justin Chadwell scored six points in the opening frame to give the Pirates a 15-8 lead.
Willow Springs then had an 11-4 run to tie the game at 19-19 before Norwood’s Garrett Davault scored five straight points.
The momentum went completely in the Pirates’ favor just before the half as Peyton McDaris hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer to put Norwood up 31-21.
In the first half, the Pirates made 13-of-18 shots from the field.
Willow Springs did have an 8-2 run to start the third quarter to cut the lead back to 33-29, but that would be about as close as they would get for the rest of the game.
Davault had 10 points in the fourth quarter and the Pirates celebrated with the program’s first Mansfield Tournament title.
The Pirates’ offense made 21-of-33 shots from the field (64%) in the win.
Davault, who was the Tournament MVP, led the Pirates with 24 points, seven rebounds, four assists, two steals and one block.
Justin Chadwell also made the All-Tournament team as he scored eight points and four rebounds.
Gavin McGraw added 13 points, five rebounds and two assists; Max McGowan had six points; Jacob Sinning had six points and four rebounds; and McDaris scored three points, one steal and one assist.
In the semifinals, the Pirates pulled away from local rival Mansfield with a 57-30 victory.
After the opening tip-off, Davault had his first of five first-half dunks as he scored 22 of his team’s 29 points in the first two quarters.
Davault had two dunks in the first quarter and three in the second quarter. Mansfield had a 6-0 run in the third quarter behind Chase Cartwright’s four points, but the Lions would not get much closer.
Davault scored 26 points, eight rebounds, seven steals and four assists. Justin Chadwell had eight points, three rebounds and one assist; Sinning scored 10 points, three rebounds, one block and one steal; McGraw added four points, three rebounds and two steals; McGowan had two points, five rebounds, four assists and two steals; and Dylan Calhoun had fie late points.
In the first round of the tournament, the Pirates beat Plato for the second time in one week. This time they knocked off the Eagles, 64-38.
They led by 11 at the half before cruising late to the win. Davault paced the Pirates with 23 points. Justin Chadwell had nine points, Sinning scored eight, McGraw had seven, McGowan added six, McDaris had five points, Noah Drake scored four points and Brayden Wehrer scored two points.
In a game played at Plato a week earlier, Davault scored his 2,000th career point as the Pirates won, 70-52. Davault finished with 33 points. Sinning scored 14 points, McDaris had eight points, Justin Chadwell scored seven, Drake had six points and McGraw had two points.
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