Since the Rockport girls basketball team went to an independent schedule, the games it plays against the smaller schools in the Cape Ann League are usually a good barometer for the team's tournament chances.
On Saturday night in the Rockport Holiday Tournament Finals, the Vikings picked up a well earned win over a CAL team in Georgetown, 50-37 to capture their first holiday tournament championship.
With the win, Rockport moves to 5-0 on the season.
"To beat a Cape Ann League team is always really big for us," Rockport head coach Mike Wilson said. "I know Georgetown only has one win but they play a lot of good teams and they beat us twice last year. I'm really proud of the team, they're playing great and they deserve to win this tournament."
The Vikings defense pestered the Royals all game, forcing 26 turnovers, rendering their disadvantage in the rebounding department moot.
Rockport smothered the Georgetown ball handler all night and closed in on the shooters, forcing several missed from three-point range.
"Defense has been our forte, that's why we're 5-0," Wilson said. "We did a really good job on their shooters, didn't give them any open looks."
Kylie Schrock earned tournament MVP honors as she poured in 34 points and grabbed 15 rebounds to lead all players. The sophomore scored 51 points in two tournament wins and scored over 60% of her team's points.
Schrock got Rockport off to a 14-4 lead after one with 11 points in the opening eight minutes. Schrock did most of her damage driving to the basket but kept the defense honest with three 3-pointers.
The Vikings were in command at the half, up 23-13 before Georgetown opened the third with a 6-0 run to cut the deficit to 23-19.
Rockport, however, followed that up with a 10-0 run of their own, which started with a Lauren Ryan three and ended with a three from Alexa Osier, extending the lead to 33-19.
Georgetown would never get closer than eight points in the final 11 minutes of play.
Ryan had eight points on the night and also earned a spot on the All Tournament Team as she played great perimeter defense and facilitated the offense.
Rockport will be looking to make it six wins in a row to open the season at Mt. Alvernia on Saturday (1:30 p.m.). The Vikings beat Mt. Alvernia by 27-points earlier this month.
Boys comeback bid falls short
The Rockport boys basketball team trailed for most of the night against St. Joseph's Prep in the Rockport Holiday Tournament Finals, but nearly mounted a big comeback.
Trailing by 16 points in the third quarter (46-30), the Vikings cut the deficit to one on multiple occasions but could never get over the final hump in a 71-68 loss.
After St. Joe's took its biggest lead of the night with two minutes to go in the third, Rockport mounted a spirited effort to get back into the game with a 14-2 run to make it 48-44 with 6:20 to play. Back-to-back threes from Bowen Slingluff, who had 13 points off the bench with 11 coming in the fourth, capped off the run.
Rockport (2-4) stayed right with the Phoenix the rest of the way, led by big shots from Gavyn Hillier, who scored a team-high 24 points to go with 10 rebounds, and Austin Matus (19 points), who had a big three-point play late in the fourth to make it a one-point game.
Tournament MVP Nathan Robertson knocked down five clutch free throws in the final minute to seal the win.
Rockport hosts Manchester Essex on Friday (6:30 p.m.).