BANGOR, Maine — Even though his team held double-digits leads on two occasions in the first half Friday afternoon, Mount View boys basketball coach Steve Caron was far from satisfied.
He had reason to be concerned, as Old Town fought back from an 11-point deficit and even led briefly in the fourth quarter.
But Mike Cochrane was clutch down the stretch, scoring eight of his game-high 21 points in the fourth to lead his third-seeded Mustangs from Thorndike to a 46-38 Eastern Maine Class B quarterfinal win over the No. 6 Coyotes at the Bangor Auditorium.
Mount View (16-3) advances to Wednesday’s semifinal against No. 2 Ellsworth, a 66-65 overtime winner over No. 9 Rockland on Friday night.
After the Coyotes (12-7) erased the 11-point deficit and got within 25-21 at halftime, coach Marty Clark switched to a 2-3 zone defense, but the Mustangs simply grew more patient in their offense and were able to generate easy layups.
“The last 4-5 games of the regular season, everybody’s started playing zones against us,” said Cochrane. “We’ve just been working on trying to stay patient and not settling for 3-pointers.”
Mount View took a 29-27 lead into the fourth quarter, and the Coyotes managed to grab a 31-29 edge on Zach Kochis’ jumper from the right elbow at the 6:15 mark.
But Old Town managed just two field goals the rest of the way, and the Mustangs went 11-for-16 from the foul line in the quarter while Cochrane was 4-for-6 and Colby Blanchard 4-for-4.
That was a solid response, as Mount View only connected on four second-half field-goal attempts — all by Cochrane.
“We’ve responded all season long, we’ve lost leads in the past,” said Caron. “We recognized that we need to attack better, push the ball a little bit better.”
Cochrane’s conventional three-point play with 5:27 left broke a 31-31 tie, but after Old Town’s Luke Bartlett re-tied it on the subsequent possession, Cochrane’s follow-up basket with 4:17 left gave the Mustangs the lead for good.
Most of Old Town’s offense came from Bartlett, who led his team with 17 points, while Bronson Merry played a solid game inside, scoring nine.
“We scrimmage Marty’s team every summer and they’re well-coached, make good adjustments,” Caron said.
Cochrane also led Mount View in rebounding with six while Dylan Keller had three steals for the Mustangs.