Div. I Boys' Basketball Quarterfinal: Central moves on to semifinalsBy CHRIS DUFFY
Chief Sports Editor
March 11. 2018 12:13AM
MANCHESTER - The smallest player made the biggest plays for Manchester Central on Saturday night.
Five-foot, six-inch guard Antoine Revere lit the Little Green fuse in the third quarter, then personally answered Nashua South's challenges down the stretch, leading Central to a 61-46 victory over the Purple Panthers in an NHIAA Division I boys' basketball quarterfinal at Simon Gym.
Central, the No. 5 seed in the tournament, advanced to play top seed Portsmouth in the 7:30 p.m. semifinal on Wednesday at UNH's Lundholm Gym. Portsmouth topped Winnacunnet of Hampton 64-52 in the quarterfinals Saturday night.
The Little Green's last visit to Durham came two years ago, when they beat Merrimack in overtime in the final.
Revere led all scorers with 19 points on Saturday and they all seemed to come at crucial times.
After netting two points in a foul-filled first half - Central led 26-21 at the break - he contributed seven points and a no-look assist for Dede Niyang's 3-pointer as Central built a double-digit lead in the first four minutes of the third quarter. The advantage peaked at 14 on a layup by Jesus Milan with 1:45 left in the quarter.
The 13th-seeded Panthers, though, knew the drill. Two nights earlier, they trailed Manchester Memorial by 14 before rallying for a first-round upset. So when Richie Mercado (11 points) hit a putback and a driving lefty layup on consecutive possessions, South was in familiar territory, down seven. After Central's Yansel Reyes hit two free throws, South's Alex Amigo answered with a trey and the Central lead was whittled to six with 5:28 left.
Up stepped Revere. He hit a layup, then a 10-footer in the lane after South had closed to within four. Revere followed that up with a floating layup, then a step-back 12-footer to help Central restore its cushion. South got no closer than nine over the final two minutes.
Forward Kyler Bosse and guard Eric Cortijo-Rodriguez added 10 points each for Central.
Center Clay Medling scored 10 points for the Panthers.
Dover 45, Bedford 43: At Bedford, the 11th-ranked Green Wave led start to finish to upset the No. 3 Bulldogs. Dover will meet No. 2 Exeter on Wednesday in the semifinals.
Exeter 68, Alvirne 58: At Exeter, Cody Morissette scored 33 points, including 21 in the fourth quarter, to lead Exeter past Alvirne of Hudson.
Morissette outscored Alvirne's Max Bonney-Liles, who scored 14 of his own in the fourth quarter on the way to his 25-point night.