St. Regis Falls’ Caylob Boykin dribbles the ball up court against Madrid-Waddington’s Luke LePage on Wednesday. Vin Gallo/Malone Telegram

ST. REGIS FALLS — Leading up to Thanksgiving, there were concerns for St. Regis Falls basketball.

With the school district last month quarantining due to high transmission rates of COVID-19 in the Waverly area, and St. Regis Falls operating through remote learning, the Saints’ boys and girls teams were unable to hit the hardwood for preseason practice.

The boys team, in a 58-34 loss to Madrid-Waddington to open its season, was able to get its first basketball game of the winter in on Wednesday.

“It feels great to finally get back to playing sports — (and) have some fans in here to be able to watch us,” the Saints’ Derek Prevost said. “(It was a) tough game, we played a great team.”

Drew Harmer led the way for Madrid-Waddington, scoring 18 points to go with four steals. Jake Morgan was the Yellowjackets’ second leading scorer with 12 points. Caylob Boykin and Nate Mayville each scored nine points for St. Regis Falls, while Prevost added eight.

The Yellowjackets led the Saints 32-9 at halftime.

“We all had a rough night,” Prevost said. “Madrid — it’s Madrid. What are you gonna do? They produce athletes. It’s tough.”

Madrid-Waddington in the first half brought in 10 offensive rebounds and grabbed a total of 14 offensive rebounds over St. Regis Falls in the game.

A jumper from Garrett Moss and a driving layup for Prevost in the second quarter’s opening minutes were the Saints’ only back-to-back baskets in the first half.

The Saints’ twin field goals made it 23-9, Madrid-Waddington, with just under seven minutes left in the second.

The Yellowjackets after three quarters held a 35-point lead. They outscored the Saints 20-8 in the third. Madrid-Waddington’s dominance was established early, as it scored 10 of its first 15 points of the game off turnovers.

The Saints finished the game with 15 turnovers.

Despite struggling to hold possession through the majority of the game, St. Regis Falls outscored Madrid-Waddington, 17-6 in the fourth quarter. The Saints finished the game on a 26-12 run.

“We’ve got to work on passing. We had a lot of turnovers (that were) unnecessary. We played a lot better defense in the closing minutes there,” Prevost said. “That’s something that we’ve got to be able to do. We played a 3-2 zone at the end there. We seem to excel at that — (and) get out on the shooters better, get in the passing lanes.”

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