It happens in sports all the time.
One of the best players on the team gets hurt and the coach goes to another player and says to him any of these time-classic phrases.
* You have to be in charge now.
* I'm asking you to carry the load.
* It's time that you step up to the plate.
With scoring leader, Brett Kosciolek out for what could be two more weeks from a concussion, junior guard, Bo Rottet has answered the call to each of these phrases. After scoring 30 points against Northern Lehigh In his previous game Rottet fired in 29 more in last night's 56-40 league win over Jim Thorpe.
"Not that he was our entire game plan, but we expected that Bo would get his shots and come up big for us again," said Raider coach Caszy Kosciolek.
Rottet was hot early, scoring eight points with three for four from the field to give Tamaqua (8-4,2-3) a one point edge after the first eight minutes.The Olympians kept it within a bucket during the entire quarter on baskets by Chris Micciche, Jordan McEmoyle, Shane Snisky, and a five spot from Bryce Micciche.
The Raiders dominated the second quarter as Rottet first scored on a driving layup and subsequent free throw. His put back off the glass opened up a six- point margin with six minutes remaining. He finished the half with 20 points in and was instrumental in a mid-quarter 8-0 Raider run. Tamaqua's change-up trap defense stymied Jim Thorpe (2-10, 1-4), which could only manage four points from down low by Snisky.
"We gave them different looks with our man defenses," said Kosciolek. "This really helped our transition to get good shots on offense."
In the third quarter, while Rottet cooled off a bit, Adam Frantz helped preserve Tamaqua's large lead by scoring seven points in less than a minute.
"Although Bo led the way, I think this was our best team effort of the season," said Kosciolek. "We had excellent concentration on defense and when we rotated our substitutes, we didn't miss a beat. There were minimal breakdowns."
In the fourth, Rottet's full court layup off of a steal finished his night and gave his Raiders a 23 point lead with six minutes left. For Jim Thorpe. Snisky continued his strong offensive play in the paint to lead the Olympians with 14 points on the night."
"Shane gives us everything he's got every game," said JT coach Grant Whary. "He's scrappy and goes hard no matter what the score."
Despite the lopsided loss, Whary had the same opinion of his team's performance as did Kosciolek.
"Believe it or not, I thought this was the best we played since our win over Pine Grove," Whary said. "We were without our senior guard, Steve Principe who also suffered a concussion and we brought up five players from the junior varsity; nevertheless, I still thought our team attitude and effort was excellent."
This happens in sports all the time too.
Both the winning and losing coach of a one-sided game walk away pleased with their team's improved performance.
In this case, both Kosciolek and Whary got what they wanted from their players despite the score and the difference in won-loss records.
Rottet 12-3-3-29, Wargula 1-2-2-4, Frantz 3-1-2-7, MacDonald 1-1-2-3, Trev. Skripko 0-0-0-0, Conn. Hartung 1-0-0-2, Marcin 2-0-0-4, Ty. Skripko 1-0-0-2, Van Bushkirk 1-1-1-3, Chris Hartung 1-0-0-2, Blaker 0-0-0-0. Miller 0-0-0-0. TOTALS: 23-8-11-56.
S.Snisky 6-2-2-14, B. Micciche 3-1-2-9, C, Micciche 2-2-3-6, McElmoyle 1-0-0-2 Lawrence 1-0-0-2, Green 2-3-3-7, O. Snisky 0-0-0-0, B. Carroll 0-0-0-0, Jefferson 0-0-0-0. TOTALS: 15-8-10-40.
Tamaqua 12 19 15 10 - 56
Jim Thorpe 11 4 12 13 - 40
Three-pointers: T- Rottett 2. JT- B.Micciche 2.