The Herald, Sharon, Pa.


December 18, 2013

Roundup: Farrell rolls past SR; Hickory edges Meadville at 'House of Thrills'

- — There’s one certain method of jump-starting a basketball team’s lethargic offense — ratchet up the defensive intensity.

‘”I thought we started off a little sluggish, so we put them in a press ... and our guys responded. They picked the pace up, picked the tempo up, and it worked to our advantage,” assessed Steelers’ skipper Roland Shannonhouse.

Farrell forced visiting Slippery Rock into 17 first-half turnovers — 26 overall — and the Steelers streaked to a 67-44 District 10 Region 5-AAA rout of the Rockets Tuesday night.


ä Farrell 67, Slippery Rock 44 —
At E.J. McCluskey Gymnasium, the host Steelers swarmed Slippery Rock with relentless defensive pressure.

Farrell (2-0, 4-0) forced the Rockets into 17 first-half turnovers and a 5-for-19 shooting performance, flipping a 10-9 deficit into a 28-12 margin at intermission.

The Steelers shot only 4 for 14 during the 1st frame, but Farrell finshed 13 for 30 by the break.

“I think once we sped the game up and got the easy conversions — instead of standing around shooting jump shots — we started to get our confidence and knocked some shots down,” Shannonhouse said.

Ike Jones jolted Slippery Rock for a game-high 19-point performance, while Malik Miller mustered 10 markers and dished ou 4 assists. Also for Farrell, Tyrone Archie added 9 points and a team-high 7 rebounds — 1 more than Jones — Jamel Brown bucketed 8 points, and Chris James joined in with 6 points and a team-high 4 dimes.

Farrell finished 28 for 58 from the floor (48.2 percent) and the Steelers were guilty of only 9 turnovers.

Slippery Rock (1-1, 3-2) was led by Jake Witmer, who went for 14 points, though he was the lone Rocket to record double digits. Camren Neal notched a game-high dozen caroms, while Matt Badger distributed 4 assists. However, Slippery Rock shot just 18 for 41 from the field (43.9).

“That’s all we’re asking for, and we tell ‘’em day in and day out — defense wins championships, and it’ll keep you in every game,” Shannonhouse concluded, admitting, “They’re gettin’ the message.” — By Ed Farrell, Herald assistant sports editor.

ä Reynolds 59, Saegertown 44 — At Saegertown, the visiting Raiders rolled to their 4th consecutive conquest of the young season.

Garhett Frable fashioned a 16-point, 12-rebound double-double  and Kyle McConnell collected 10 more caroms for Reynolds (4-0), which roared to a 33-19 margin at intermission.

Also for Reynolds, Jake Leipheimer lent 10 tallies and McConnell 9.

Reynolds’ lone shortcoming was its 12-for-26 free-throw shooting.

However Head Coach Dan Kilgore said. “(Tuesday night’s win) was nice, but we start the real season Friday (Region 2-AA).

For Saegertown (0-4), Wood went for 11 points, but was the host Panthers’ lone double-figure point-producer.

ä Hickory 62, Meadville 61 — Meadville’s “House of Thrills” lived up to its nickname on Tuesday night as Geoff Evans’ Hickory Hornets (1-1, 3-1) edged the Bulldogs (0-2, 1-4) in a Region 5-AAA clash.

Ross Passalinqua grabbed a big rebound at the end of the game and was fouled. He missed the shot from the charity stripe and the Bulldogs fired a desperation full-court shot at the buzzer, which was no good.

Anthony Cannone buried 3 treys and scored 15 of his 17 points in the 4th quarter. Also, Aaron Conley scored 11 for Hickory and Andrew Pryts had 9 rebounds.

Jason Clune buried 4 treys en route to 23 points for Meadville and Faizon McClure scored 16 points.

ä Grove City 56, Oil Cit 46 — At Grove City, the host Eagles erupted for 37 second-half points — 22 during the 3rd period — and erased a stagnant 15-all halftime stalemate.

Derek Turner tallied a game-high 16 points for Grove City (2-0, 5-0) in the Region 5-AAA contest, while Spencer Marnich mustered 14 markers and Foster Reznor recorded 12 for veteran mentor Don Fee.

For Oil City (0-1, 3-1), Geir garnered 16 and Way went for 12.

ä West Middlesex 48, Kennedy Catholic 44 — At Hermitage, coach Chad Mild’s Big Reds (2-3) pulled out the non-region win by outscoring KC 20-13 in the 4th quarter.

The game was tied 10-all after the opening 8 minutes and KC led 25-21 at halftime and 31-28 after 3 before WM rallied for the win.

Christian Porterfield, Isaac Williams and Trey Staunch all had 10 points each for the Big Reds.

Andre Campbell fired in a game-high 15 for the Golden Eagles (3-2), Sam Crow registered a dozen points and Matt Hurton added 11 markers.

ä Mercer 74, Rocky Grove 57 — At The ’Grove, Mercer’s Jon Scheidhauer hammered home a career-high 30 points to pace the visiting Mustangs to the inter-region road rout.

Mercer (2-2) rallied from the Orioles’ opening-quarter 24-point outburst to forge a 39-37 margin at intermission as Logan Clarke canned 8 of his 13 points and Trenton Fowler fired in a pair of triples.

Scheidhauer hit for 20 of his game-high 30 points after intermission on 9 field goals and a pair of free throws, though he did not connect from beyond the arc.

Fowler finished with 10 for Mercer, and the Mustangs made 14 of 23 freebies.

Rocky Grove (1-4) was led by Davis’s 22 poins, but he was the lone double-figure scorer for the Orioles. Davis drilled 5 from beyond the 3-point line.

ä George Junior Republic 72, Franklin 70 —  At The Castle, the visiting Tigers triumphed at the horn on Eric Fuller’s basket.

GJR trailed 70-69 with 5.1 ticks to play before Fuller provided the heroics.

Fuller finished with a 25-point, 7-rebound, 3-assist line for GJR (1-1, 2-2), while Tamair Holloway had 13 points and 6 rebounds and Hadari Baker bucketed 10.

For Franklin (0-2, 1-3), Ritchey rifled in 19, Rutherford 14, and Maxon 15 markers. The Knights knocked down 12 shots from beyond the arc, more than twice as many as GJR (5).


ä Franklin 52, West Middlesex 21 —
At West Middlesex, the Big Reds fell to 1-1 with the loss.

Walter Drda (113), Mitchell Murray (120) and Jeffrey Spencer (285) posted falls for WM.

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