In this hard-fought effort from both teams, MTA emerged on top. MTA held a steady lead for the first half, but the Montreal Heat fought back nearly all the way in the second half. The MTA Lions held off the Heat and won this one 48-38.
The Heat gave it their all on the court, and it looked like they were about to take a lead at a couple of points late in the game. However, largely due to MTA’s Gavriel Rudman, Yosef Shmuel, and Daniel Wolk, MTA was able to remain ahead and land those late-game shots.
With the combination of a tight defense, some sloppy shooting, and lack of ball movement, the score remained low and tight for most of the first quarter. Nevertheless, MTA was able to get its act together in the last couple of minutes and pull ahead 12-6 over the Heat.
MTA held their lead with consistent defense and shooting throughout the second quarter. It was some of the same of what was seen from Montreal in the first quarter, but they clearly got their heads more into the game and carried that into the second half. The teams entered halftime at 24-16, MTA.
The Heat brought the heat in the third quarter, at one point getting within two point of MTA. Montreal had a much larger presence in the crowd, which likely, in part, fueled their resurgence. MTA still managed to hold its own and not give up a lead, but the game seemed to be heading in the Heat’s favor.
In the fourth quarter the Heat again came very close to taking the lead, but failed to do so. MTA outscored Montreal 11-7 in the fourth quarter to secure the win by a 10 point margin. Shmuel helped his team, totaling six two-pointers throughout the game, along with eight rebounds and two assists. Wolk also made eight rebounds, had three steals, and drained six free-throws.
Up next, MTA will play (19) Maimonides in the Tier III semifinals on Sunday in the Max Stern Athletic Center at 1 PM. As for Montreal, they will play a Tier III consolation game against (22) SCY High on Sunday at 10 PM in the Max Stern Athletic Center.