The ability to string together a series of runs in the game of basketball is one of the most important attributes of a successful team. Perhaps, an even more important quality than that is the ability to answer the bell once the opposition goes on its respective run.
On Monday night, Marian showed that it possesses both of those characteristics as it rolled to a 60-40 Schuylkill League Division 3 win over Panther Valley.
The theme of the night was momentum and the Colts (7-1) were able to change the momentum, of the ball game at a moment’s notice.
“I think the key for us lately has been our balance. They took some things away from us early, but we were able to find other ways to score,” said Marian head coach John Patton. “The last couple games ,we’ve been moving the ball really well, spreading it around and we’ve been finishing.”
The Panthers (4-7) did their best to hang around in the first quarter, battling back and forth with the Colts, using a triangle and two defense to keep the Marian offense at bay for most of the frame. However, due to the inside presence of the Colts and their offensive rebounding ability, they finished out the first quarter strong, leading by four going into the second.
A 9-0 run by Marian extended its lead to 13 early in the second quarter. As Patton noted, the Colts moved the ball well on the night, but it was the inside-outside offensive scheme that hurt the Panthers. The scoring prowess of Marian post players Brandon Mohammed and Ryan Karchner and their ability to pass out of the post to the Marian shooters proved to be a deadly combination.
Karchner (17 points) and Mohammed (16 points) combined to lead the Colts in the paint. But Marian also proved dangerous from the perimeter as it knocked down six three-pointers — which all seemed to come when the Panthers pulled within striking distance.
“I thought physically we competed tonight, banging inside and playing hard, but we had too many mental lapses at key moments,” said Panther Valley head coach Pat Crampsie. “That’s been an issue this year.
“I thought there were smaller portions of it tonight, but we can’t lose shooters. There were also times we didn’t hold a box out and they were able to extend the possession. Great physical effort tonight, we just have to be better.”
The Colts took an 11-point advantage at the half and kept the Panthers at a comfortable distance throughout the third, leading 51-37 entering the final quarter.
The Colts would then break the game open in the fourth, going on a 9-0 run to extend their lead to 23 points.
“I think we’ve been getting better every night and the key to our success is that everyone has been contributing,” said Patton. “The kids don’t care who is the leading scorer night in and night out, and I think they’re all playing confident right now.
“Our versatility as of late is certainly giving us a few different dimensions.”
BACK ON THE BENCH ... Panther Valley head coach Pat Crampsie, who was diagnosed with prostate cancer before the season made his season debut on the sidelines for the Panthers.
SCORERS ... Jarrod Paisley helped out Karchner and Mohammed, scoring 12 for the Colts. For Panther Valley, Tristan Blasko and Rene Figueroa scored 12 points each.
Karchner 7-3-3-17, Mohammed 8-0-1-16, Mummey 2-0-0-6, Stauffer 1-1-2-3, Fritz 1-0-0-3, Paisley 4 -2-2-12, Collevechio 1-0-0-3, G. Miller 0 -0-0-0, J. Miller 0-0-0-0, Maylath 0-0-0 -0, Choley 0-0-0-0, McLaughlin 0-0-0-0, Whilden 0-0-0-0. Totals 24-6-8-60.
Rodriguez 0-0-0-0, Micholik 3-0-2-8, Turner 1-0-0-3, Figueroa 5-0-0-12, Disler 0-0-0-0, White 1-1-1-3, Blasko 5-2-4-12, Rohlfing 0-0-0 -0, Morgans 0-2-2-2. Totals 15-5-9-40.
Marian 15 18 18 9 — 60
Panther Vy. 11 11 15 3 — 40
Three-pointers: M- Mummey 2, Fritz 1, Paisley 2, Collevechio 1; PV- Micholik 2, Turner 1, Figueroa 2.