Whether it’s on the gridiron or the hardwood, Everett seniors Theo Zidor and Jordan McAfee have an unmistakable chemistry, always seeming to complement each other in key moments when the Crimson Tide are in need of a boost.
Monday night on the Crimson Tide’s home floor, the two big men continued their attack on over-matched opponents, leading second-ranked Everett (16-1) to an 85-59 victory over No. 12 Lowell (14-5).
Zidor finished with a double-double (26 points, 14 rebounds), while McAfee poured in 16.
“We both feed off of each other,” Zidor said of his fellow forward. “If he sees me doing well, he turns up. It was good to pound them [down low] because they’re smaller than us. We took advantage of that; we crashed the boards, got every rebound and put it back up.”
Everett exploited its size advantage from the opening tip, but struggled to contain Lowell’s fast-paced drive-and-kick offense in the opening quarter.
The Crimson Tide quickly steadied themselves, remedying their sluggish defense while maintaining a break-neck pace on offense.
A 14-0 second quarter run was followed by a 10-0 spurt to begin the third, giving Everett a 55-30 lead that wasn’t challenged for the remainder of the contest.
“We tightened up [defensively],” said Everett coach John DiBiaso. “We say we’re going to win the third and fourth quarter every game because we use a lot of guys and try to take the legs out of people. It worked again.”
While Zidor and McAfee were the offensive focal points, able to get behind the Red Raiders frontcourt for easy looks under the basket, guards Ghared Boyce (13 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists) and Shooby Beldor (10 points) also made their presence felt, helping Everett move the ball with a dizzying quickness.
“We were very unselfish,” DiBiaso said. “We moved the ball and when we move the ball, we’re a real good team.”
Added Zidor of his teammate Boyce, “He’s our playmaker. If he can get us the ball, he gets us the ball; if he can go off, he goes off. We just play off him.”
Lowell was led by junior guard Alex Rivera (16 points).
Owen Pence can be reached at email@example.com.