GREENPORT — Behind a solid team effort, the Coxsackie-Athens Indians overcame an early deficit to down the Saugerties Sawyers 46-40 in Summer League basketball action at Columbia-Greene Community College on Thursday night.
The Sawyers jumped out to an early 9-2 lead on the Indians, utilizing their post game with bigs Liam Schoonmaker and Ryan Whittaker dominating the paint.
Both offenses struggled early on, allowing the Indians to hang around and cut the deficit to four, 13-9, after a Gil Bell bucket with 5:34 remaining in the first half.
The Sawyers responded with Whittaker taking over the game. Whittaker kicked his game out to the 3-point line and buried back-to-back treys to extend the Sawyers' lead to eight with under three minutes to play in the half.
Coxsackie-Athens closed the half on a 7-2 run headlined by a 3-pointer from Andon Monroe and baskets by Killian Schrader and Josh Kiefer, bringing the score to 21-18 at the half.
Coxsackie-Athens came out stronger in the second half, utilizing its defense to jump start the offense. Kiefer converted two steals into two transition baskets for the Indians, narrowing the deficit to one, 27-26.
Saugerties responded with another 3-pointer by Whittaker, putting the Sawyers up 30-26, but the Indians failed to go away.
Down four, Coxsackie-Athens went on a 6-0 run to take a 34-30 lead, their first since the opening basket of the game. Kane Schrader led the charge with four points on two contested drives into the paint.
Coxsackie-Athens was able to keep Saugerties from coming back with buckets from Killian Schrader and Bell, extending the lead to 41-35 with under five minutes to play.
The Sawyers battled back, taking their offense back into the paint, with Schoonmaker scoring on consecutive possessions to make it 41-39.
Despite Saugerties closing the deficit, the Indians were able to finish the game out at the free throw line to capture the victory.
Coxsackie-Athens was led by Bell with 10 points while Boehm, Kiefer and Killian Schrader each added nine.
For Saugerties, Whittaker led the way with 11 points and Schoonmaker chipped in with nine.