RAF MENWITH HILL, England – Josh Willis scored 24 points Saturday, and Schuyler Backlar and Chris Jackson each added 19 as the Menwith Hill Mustangs rallied past the Alconbury Dragons, 74-61, in a Region I game.The victory was the fourth of the weekend over an Alconbury team by a Menwith Hill squad. Menwith’s boys prevailed, 69-40, on Friday, and Menwith’s girls downed Alconbury, 26-2, on Friday and 28-10 on Saturday. Menwith’s girls completed their regular season 11-2 overall and 5-2 against Region I teams. Saturday’s rally from a 53-48 deficit at the end of three quarters allowed the Mustang boys to close their regular season 3-10 overall and 2-5 in the region.Saturday’s game “was a lot closer than it looks on paper,” Menwith Hill boys’ coach Greg DeJardin wrote in a Sunday-morning E-mail. “In the fourth quarter, trying to dig our way back into it, we went to a full-court press with tight defense on every Dragon guard in their backcourt, leading to several errant passes and steals. “At the 5:50 mark, momentum shifted when … Backlar completed a 3-point play after a double-pump lay-in on the right side,” DeJardin continued, noting that the play cut Alconbury’s lead to 56-55. Jackson then stole the ball for a lay-up that put Menwith Hill up for good. It was one of 12 steals on the day for Jackson, and a key one in the Mustangs’ 26-9 fourth-quarter run. Backlar stole the ball seven times on Saturday and Willis posted a team-high 16 rebounds.The run negated a nine-of-17 performance from the floor for 22-point scorer Taylor Williamson of Alconbury.Friday, Willis and Backlar each scored a game-high 18 points in a contest the Mustangs put away with a 23-13 fourth-quarter run.Unlike their boys, Menwith Hill’s girls were never challenged by winless Alconbury.Defensively, they held the Lady Dragons to five straight scoreless quarters, the final three on Friday and the opening two on Saturday.Rachael Solini led Menwith Hill on Friday with 10 points; Monique McCreary, playing the final home game of her four-year career at Menwith, topped the scoring on Saturday with eight points.Next up for Menwith Hill is the European Division III tournament Feb. 23-26 at Mannheim.Alconbury’s boys will take a 5-9 record and the Dragons’ girls an 0-13 mark into non-regional games Wednesday at The American School in London. Both Alconbury squads are then ticketed for a trip to Lakenheath on Friday for games against the Lancer JVs before moving on to the European D-III event.

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