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By Mike Flanagan
Hometown Weekly Sports Editor
Simply put, the 2018-2019 season was a tough one for Medfield High School boys varsity basketball, as the Warriors failed to qualify for the state tournament.
This season, things already appear different for Big Blue after a strong opening night performance against perennial TVL power Medway on Friday evening. Unfortunately, multiple double-digit scoring performances from junior forward Aidan Clarke (16 points, 13 rebounds, eight blocks) and senior captain/forward Rabi Armany (13 points) still were not enough, as Medway prevailed by a 51-46 final.
The defending TVL co-champion Mustangs began the game on a 19-7 run. Junior guard Reis Hanna buried a three-pointer to cut the deficit to 19-10, but Medway would hold a 21-10 lead at the end of one. A back-and-forth second quarter highlighted by back-to-back layups from Clarke and a three-pointer by Drew Baacke cut the deficit to 31-25 at halftime.
Medway began the second half on a 6-0 run to extend their lead to 37-25. Medfield called a timeout and responded with a 12-4 run to close out the quarter, highlighted by a layup from Clarke on an athletic tip-in at the rim just before time expired. The run allowed the Warriors to trim the deficit to four at 41-37 at the end of three.
The teams continued to go blow-for-blow throughout the fourth quarter, but Medway managed to stay ahead by six throughout. The closest Medfield would get was five, thanks to a long two-pointer by Armany with under five seconds to play. Medway inbounded the ball and ran out the remainder of the clock to emerge with the five-point victory.
Medfield will look to respond when the Warriors host non-league rival Walpole on December 19.
For funny and insightful sports analysis, follow Mike Flanagan on his personal Twitter and Instagram @flano0.