BANGOR, Maine — Penquis Valley of Milo put a stranglehold on Stearns High School of Millinocket with tenacious man-to-man defense Wednesday, setting the tone for a 51-23 Class C boys quarterfinal basketball victory at the Bangor Auditorium.
Coach Tony Hamlin’s second-seeded Patriots (18-1) move into Friday’s 8:35 p.m. semifinal against No. 6 Dexter (13-7), which edged Lee Academy in Wednesday’s first game.
Penquis built an early advantage, then methodically extended it as the game progressed in a well-rounded performance. The Patriots held the seventh-seeded Minutemen to 10 field goals and 28 percent shooting and also forced many of Stearns’ 16 turnovers.
Junior Isaiah Bess sparked Penquis with a game-high 21 points, including the 1,000th of his career. He went 8-for-9 at the foul line and also grabbed eight rebounds and blocked three shots.
Junior Trevor Lyford tossed in 18 points and grabbed five rebounds while Cody Herbest added five points for the Patriots, who shot 57 percent (20-for-34) from the floor.
Senior Kyle McVey led Stearns with 11 points and classmate Riley Whitney posed six points and seven rebounds.