Burlington High boys basketball wins finale

On senior night, it was quite fitting that the 12th graders on the Burlington High boys basketball team came through in a major way.

Against a solid Westford Academy team, the Red Devils finished their regular season with a 15-5 record after defeating the Grey Ghosts, 66-55 at Burlington.

Senior Jordan Sutherland and senior exchange student Ben Poehler sparked BHS along with senior Eric Sekyaya.

Fellow seniors Aiddin Hayes and Isiah Burley were also honored before the game.

Westford controlled the early action, jumping out to a 12-3 lead and taking a 10-point advantage (22-12) early in the second quarter before a 12-point run by the Red Devils changed the game.

Baskets by junior Cedric Rodriguez and Poehler started Burlington’s surge before a steal by junior Jaden Brehm led to a pair of foul shots by Rodriguez.

Back-to-back 3-pointers by Sekyaya and Brehm, Brehm’s after a nice steal by Sutherland, gave BHS its first lead since 3-0.

A 3-pointer by Westford senior Jack Sullivan put the Ghosts up one at halftime, 25-24, but Burlington had clearly seized momentum.

The Red Devils opened the second half with an 11-4 run to put them ahead to stay.

Sutherland swished a corner three on a nice feed from Rodriguez before 3-pointers by Brehm and Rodriguez. Rodriguez’s three came after a terrific rebound and pass by Poehler, who did a little bit of everything in guiding BHS to victory.

Two more Rodriguez foul shots and a 3-pointer by Rodriguez off of Poehler’s assist pushed the BHS lead to 38-31.

Burlington led after three quarters, 41-35.

In a fast-paced fourth quarter that saw the teams combine for 45 points, Poehler had a memorable sequence as the stanza started to break Westford’s spirit.

Poehler had five points and an assist in a 10-0 spurt that put the Devils up 51-35 with six minutes to go.

Poehler drained a 3-pointer and then made a great pass to Sutherland for a 3-pointer that forced a Westford timeout and earned a high five from BHS coach Phil Conners.

After the timeout, Poehler went the length of the floor for a layup before Sekyaya added a layup.

The Ghosts cut the lead to eight before 3-pointers by Rodriguez and Sekyaya.

Westford made one more push to make it 60-53 with one minute to go, but a slashing layup by Sekyaya and two Rodriguez free throws with 38 seconds to go made it 64-53 and put the game away.

Four Red Devils scored in double figures for Burlington.

Rodriguez led the way with 21 points and hit three 3-pointers, Brehm hit five 3-pointers and scored 15 points, Sekyaya contributed 13 points and Poehler’s big night included 11 points.

Sutherland added six points with his two 3-pointers.

Sullivan led the Ghosts with 15 points, big sophomore Vishal Rampur added 14 and senior Justin Jones scored 13.

Devil Notes:

* Former Burlington High standout Chris Bramanti coaches Westford.

* At one point, a ball flew out of bounds and was caught by former BHS coach Tom Imbriglio, who was seated alongside another former Red Devil standout Mark Melanson.

* Junior Don Teguia contributed for the Devils with a nice assist on a basket by Poehler that capped a 7-0 run in the first quarter by Burlington.

* BHS will begin play in the state tournament next week.

* As of Feb. 17, the Red Devils were seeded 17th in Div. 2 with a 14-5 record. Westford Academy is bound for the state tournament in Div. 1. Despite losing to Burlington, the Grey Ghosts are 9-9 overall.