Senior cocaptain Olivia Azulay hit a jumper with one second left to lift the host Mount Alvernia girls’ basketball team to a 44-42 win over Chelsea in Tuesday’s season finale.
Mount Alvernia coach Tom Cavanaugh leaned on five of his strongest players, juniors Julie Canty, Meghan White, and Molly McClure, and senior Katherine Brooks, throughout, telling them to do whatever they could to keep Chelsea from shooting.
“They played great defense,” said Cavanaugh, in his fourth year as coach. “I told them to ignore everything I’ve told them all year, all defensive rules and just stay in front.”
But the sense of security didn’t last long, and the Red Devils pulled ahead by 1, three minutes into the fourth quarter.
“I wanted them to keep doing what they were doing,” Cavanaugh said. “I put all my seniors in and they chipped away at it. I had to get them to calm down, and in the end they recovered.”
Despite Chelsea outscoring Mount Alvernia, 19-12, in the fourth quarter, the hosts managed to catch up enough to give Azulay an opportunity for a game-winning shot.
“I told her after, ‘you made me a happy old man,’ ” Cavanaugh said. “They were jumping around like they won the NCAA tournament.”
Although the team qualified for the MIAA tournament the first year he coached, they missed making them by only one game last year and by four games this year, something that doesn’t discourage Cavanaugh.
“Last game, the big thing I stressed was that this is the first step to next year,” he said. “It’s much nicer to end the season with a win than a loss, and now we’re done.”
Plymouth North 58, Whitman-Hanson 54 — Samantha Burkhead led the Blue Eagles (17-2) with 17 points and six rebounds.
Charlestown 37, Cathedral 16 — Junior Kirsten Harris had 20 points and 11 rebounds while freshman Raeona Miles chipped in 12 points and six assists to qualify the Townies (10-9) for the tournament.
Wayland 52, Framingham 37 — Sophomore center Bronwyn Baeies scored 20 points and junior guard Kaitlyn Haase added 10 points for the Warriors.
Hanover 41, Marshfield 33 — Sophomore forward Stephanie Flynn and freshman center Meghan Raab each had 12 points and 14 rebounds to push the Indians to their 17th win of the season.
Woburn 65, Hope (R.I.) 46 — Junior Jimmy McRae led the Tanners with 20 points.
Plymouth North 70, Sandwich 69 — Sophomore forward Jay Christopher led the Eagles with 16 points and 10 rebounds and drilled two free throws with eight seconds left to give his team the victory.
St. Clement 67, Pope John 28 — Senior forward Khaneil Bruce scored 13 points in 10 minutes for the 16th-ranked Anchormen (18-1).
Marblehead 56, Manchester Essex 48 — Brothers Matt and Will Millet combined for 28 points to lead the Hornets.
Concord-Carlisle 66, Malden Catholic 53 — Senior guard Jon Dor had 17 points and five assists.
Boston Latin 5, Canton 2 — Sophomore forward Sean Burke had a goal and assist and junior forward Joe Tarantino had a goal for the Wolfpack (7-12).
Marshfield 7, Peabody 1 — Junior Pat Shea and senior Colin Macdonald each scored twice for the Rams (13-7).
Weymouth 5, Braintree 5 — Freshman Brian Chambers had two goals and two assists and Pat Coleman had a goal and two assists for the Wildcats.
Wayland 8, Weston 1 — Junior forwards Nick Morgan, Scott Carvalho and Lucas Bastarache combined for five goals and three assists to lead the Warriors.
Somerville 10, St. Joseph’s Prep 6 — Senior forwards Shane LaFee and Cam Alves combined for five goals and three assists to lead the Highlanders.
Barnstable 1, Wellesley 1 — Sophomore Danielle Hickman scored for Wellesley, assisted by junior Cecily Doktor.
Austin Prep 1, Leominster 0 — Gabby Florano scored 20 second into the game to boost Austin Prep past the visiting Blue Devils.For more scores and highlights, go to Boston.com/schools