WESTPORT, Conn. – All season, Greens Farms Academy’s opponents tried to take away center Sean Obi and make his supporting cast beat them. During the Dragons’ run to the New England Prep School Class C boys basketball championship, Zach Baines answered the call to help carry the team to its first New England title.
Baines, a sophomore from Stamford, scored 18 points and grabbed 13 rebounds Sunday as Greens Farms beat Pingree of Massachusetts, 55-50, in the championship game. Baines also delivered in a 62-50 win versus Hyde in the semifinals with 13 points and eight rebounds.
“Every game we played, we saw a different scheme on how they’ll double team Sean,’’ coach Doug Scott said. “Every time, one of the other four starters stepped up and had a big game. We’re so blessed that any of those other four are not a liability. This time, they chose to double off the scrawny little sophomore. Well, the scrawny little sophomore made them pay.”
Baines added two blocks and three steals in earning game MVP honors in Sunday’s win. Obi had 10 points and seven rebounds, but it was his five assists that helped Greens Farms the most.
“Sean is the heart of everything that we do,’’ Scott said. “He has a great basketball IQ. In my opinion, he’s the New England Player of the Year.”
Hunter Eggers had 12 points, while Matt Tate had eight points and five assists.
Greens Farms finished 24-2 and ended the season with an 18-game winning streak.
Greens Farms reached the finals with a 62-50 win against Hyde in the semifinals. The victory atoned for a loss to the same team in the opening round last year. Obi had 16 points and 12 rebounds in the semifinal win, while Pat Ryan had 14 points and was 10 of 11 from the foul line to help the Dragons pull away in the second half.