JOHNSTOWN — Through five games this season, the Johnstown boys’ basketball team had gotten off to its best start in several years with four victories.
The Sir Bills looked to continue their early-season success Friday afternoon, hosting Gloversville in Foothills Council matinee at Johnstown High School.
However, it was the Dragons who picked up a much-needed win, posting a 64-37 victory over Johnstown.
“We bounced back a little bit today,” Gloversville coach Ed Collar said. “We just need to build some momentum.”
Mariano DiCaterino scored a game-high 22 points to lead Gloversville, while Cal Porter had 13 points. Dom Dorman also hit double digits for the Dragons, finishing with 11 points.
Braden Jones led Johnstown with 14 points, while Maddox Pedrick added 12 points.
The Dragons had split their first four games this season coming into Friday’s contest.
“We really don’t know who were are yet,” coach Collar said. “We’ve been inconsistent so far this season.”
Johnstown was coming into Friday’s game after posting a 69-44 win at Broadalbin-Perth on Thursday for their first win over the Patriots since the 2018-19 season.
“It’s tough to play back-to-back games, especially when they’re less than 24 hours apart,” Johnstown coach Phil Satterlee said.
The Sir Bills started quickly during Friday’s game, getting a 3-pointer from Pedrick and a basket from Braden Jones to take a 5-0 lead.
Gloversville regrouped to take a 7-6 lead after a pair of free throws and 3-pointer from DiCaterino.
Johnstown answered by closing out the opening quarter with a 9-6 burst to grab a 15-13 lead.
After hitting five field goals in the first quarter, Johnstown managed just eight more over the final three quarters as the Gloversville defense made things difficult for the Sir Bills’ offense.
“They certainly defend hard,” Satterlee said. “I thought we got some good looks, but we weren’t able to knock them down today.”
Gloversville outscored the Sir Bills 13-4 in the second quarter to take a 26-19 lead into the half.
The Dragons lost senior James Collar in the second quarter after he was hit with a pair of technical fouls.
In his absence, DiCaterino stepped up to help lead the Gloversville offense.
“We put Mariano at the high post, we were able to get him the ball and he was able to knock down some shots for us,” coach Collar said.
DiCaterino scored 13 of his 22 points in the second half for Gloversville, which outscored Johnstown 38-18 over the final 16 minutes.
“I thought our zone was good in the first half, but we switched to man-to-man early in the second half,” coach Collar said. “I thought we did a nice job defensively today. We were able to create some turnovers and get out and run. Dom [Dorman] played well against Braden Jones and Leo [Perez] defended Ryan Hoyt well.”
The Sir Bills managed to close with in six points early in the third quarter but Gloversville closed the frame with a 14-2 run to head into the final quarter with a 46-28 advantage.
The Dragons extended their lead in the fourth quarter, outscoring the Sir Bills 19-9 to seal the win.
“It’s a long season and it’s going to have ups-and-downs,” Satterlee said. “We’re going to keep working and use this as a learning experience.”
Both teams will take part in the Bill Higgins Holiday Classic at Fonda-Fultonville on Wednesday and Thursday.
Johnstown (4-2 overall, 2-2 Foothills) will face host Fonda-Fultonville in the opening round on Wednesday at 5:30 p.m., while Gloversville (3-2 overall, 2-1 Foothills) will meet Cobleskill-Richmondville in the other first-round matchup Wednesday at 4 p.m.
The consolation game is set for 4 p.m. on Thursday, with the championship game set for 5:30 p.m.
Gloversville 13 13 20 18 — 64
Johnstown 15 4 9 9 — 37
Gloversville scoring: Ja. Collar 1-3-5, Dorman 5-0-11, DiCaterino 9-2-22, Porter 5-1-13, Clark 1-0-2, Halloran 1-0-2, Jo. Collar 1-0-3, Insonia 2-2-6. Johnstown scoring: Hoyt 1-1-3, B. Jones 5-3-14, E. Jones 2-0-6, Pedrick 4-1-12, Wheelis 1-0-2. Scoring totals: Gloversville 25-8-64, Johnstown 13-5-64.