Bombers blitz PV
In his preseason interviews, Palmerton girls head basketball coach Dan Beck admitted his squad’s intent to run the ball and pressure teams.
With a smaller club — in terms of size — its offensive game plan revolves around its ability to handle and take care of the ball.
On defense ... it’s to press.
After an opening night win over Lehighton, the Blue Bombers entered their Saturday’s game against Panther Valley with that exact plan. After an 82-47 rout of the Panthers, it’s safe to say the intent remains solid.
“I think for the most part today, it did work for us,” Beck said. “We gave up a couple of easy baskets, but just the transition part of it, I think we did a good job.
“We pushed the ball up and ran as much as we could. It also helped that the girls started to make their shots there in the second period.”
After racing out to a 22-14 lead after the first eight minutes, Palmerton lit up the books in the second, as a 31-10 period changed the complexion of the game.
Behind 11 points from freshman Beth Morgan and 10 from senior Kayla Cincilla, the Blue Bombers seemed well on their way to a 2-0 start, as they took a commanding 53-24 halftime advantage.
“Since we have a pretty small team, size-wise, we do work a lot on shooting at practice,” Cincilla said. “So having that many three-pointers (13) is great, and something we hope to improve on the rest of the season.”
In the second half, Palmerton continued to pull away from the Panthers.
“We had a really good win (Friday) night against Lehighton, and we knew we had (Friday) night to celebrate and today was a new day,” Cincilla said. “So we came out, worked hard and it feels great to get another win.”
“We had really high hopes for this season, and the coaches really implemented working hard, and we wanted to get out to a good start,” Morgan added.
With a little over three minutes remaining before half, a crucial stretch for the winners came when Cincilla nailed back-to-back triples, followed by a Reagan Nemeth trey. Cincilla made a nice layup, and Morgan added a pair of free throws and a three at the buzzer, to cap off a stellar 22-point half for the frosh.
“I think the girls were just making their shots there in the second period, and several people commented on our rotation of players,” said Beck. “We have some kids that if we pull someone out, we can put people right in and they fit right in, and it’s a nice luxury to have.”
“On offense, we didn’t really run many plays because they were doing a 1-3-1, so we really worked on pushing the ball down the court, and that seemed to work well for us,” Morgan said.
Megan Pascoe was one of the bright spots for the Panthers, as she also had a strong showing from beyond the arc, hitting seven threes.
But it wasn’t enough to stop Palmerton, which eventually built its lead to 82-42.
“I’ve never been 2-0,” Beck said. “So that’s a great feeling. We have another game (tonight), so hopefully that will be three in a row.
We have been preaching to the girls to be smart with the ball, make good passes and with so few turnovers, that’s great this early in the season; hopefully that continues.”
The Blue Bombers also committed only nine turnovers in the game, proving that their rotation of quality guards makes for an effective mix.
SUPPORTING CAST ... Palmerton had plenty of contributions outside of Cincilla and Morgan. Emily Recker, Nemeth, Papay and Brianna Moore all had solid all-around games.
MORNING SWEEP ... In the JV game, Palmerton posted a 37-8 victory. Kiersten Gursky led all scorers with 18 points.
Shreffler 0-0-0-0, Pascoe 8-1-2-24, Steber 0-0-0-0, Robin 0-2-2-2, Wehr 1-2-6-4, Vermillion 1-1-2-3, Dubosky 3-6-10-14, Jones 0-0-0-0. TOTALS: 13-12-22-47.
Guedes 1-0-0-2, Molchan 0-1-2-1, Papay 1-0-0-3, Gursky 0-0-0-0, Cincilla 7-0-0-17, Recker 2-0-1-6, Nemeth 4-0-0-9, Morgan 9-2-2-24, Moore 6-0-2-14, Nothstein 3-0-0-6, Smith 0-0-0-0. TOTALS: 33-3-7-82.
Panther Vy. 14 10 11 12 - 47
Palmerton 22 31 14 15 - 82
Three pointers: Panther Valley - Pascoe 7, Dubosky 2; Palmerton - Morgan 4, Cincilla 3, Recker 2, Moore 2, Papay 1, Nemeth 1.