NORTH ADAMS -- Ian Brink doesn't consider himself the go-to player for the Mount Greylock boys basketball team's offense.
Truth is, the Mounties don't really have one. It's one aspect that's going to give opposing defenses trouble this season.
But it was Brink that came through with a big basket when McCann Tech was clawing away at a 17-point halftime deficit to stop the Hornets' momentum and send the Mounties to a 59-40 win on Thursday night.
"I'm not one of the stronger kids on the team, so a lot of the time I play on the perimeter. I'm sort of the one that cuts to he basket and not play a big role," he said. "In basketball, it's a game of stretches. So we were trying to limit their stretch, and ... and just come back."
McCann rattled off seven straight points in 1 minute, 6 seconds midway through the third quarter to cut the Greylock lead to 11. Bringing the deficit to single digits would have been a big confidence boost for a team that struggled in the early going.
Thirty-six seconds later, Brink gobbled up half of his six points in the game when he drained a wide-open 3-pointer from the left wing, pushing Greylock's lead to 14.
Hirsch, who found Brink on the opposite side of the court, followed it up with a steal and a layup for a 16-point advantage. McCann cut the lead to 14 twice after that, but Greylock always had the answer.
"We just threw [all types of defense] at them, and we played with intensity the whole game," Hirsch said. "We didn't get a ton of steals, but we were able to slow them down long enough on their offense."
McCann coach Mike Nykorchuck credited Greylock coach Bob Thistle for making defensive adjustments since the teams last saw each other at the jamboree in Williamstown.
"They played a really good zone. I figured they would because they got great length to play that type of zone," Nykorchuck said. "Coach Thistle's always so well-prepared. I knew from the jamboree he'd make adjustments and have his kids ready to play, and he was."
While the Mounties had some well-timed shots, their defense was solid throughout. Rotating between several different schemes, Greylock limited the damage Shane Fuller, Rahmer Vincent and Collin Racette were able to inflict.
The Mounties clogged lanes with their long wingspans, making it hard for the trio of guards to get to the basket (Fuller did make 7 of 8 free throws). Greylock also put an emphasis on contesting the outside shot, which is where it knew McCann could make an impact. Those three guards combined for five treys in the game.
Fuller finished with 13, Vincent had 14 and Racette had five, which was an improvement on Greylock's part from the jamboree.
"At our jamboree, McCann really took it to us," Thistle said. "We knew we had our hands full tonight.
"He's got three good guards there, so we just had to change the channel a little bit."
At the opposite end, Greylock never focused on finding one person, opting instead to share the ball and the scoring. Four players finished with at least eight points (Hirsch 14, Cole Jackson 9, Jake Benzinger 9 and Robby Buffis 8), while nine found their way onto the scoresheet.
"A bunch of guys stepped up," Jackson said. "Everyone contributed offensively and defensively, shared the ball well."
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