Patriots can’t find enough scorers
After a mostly fallow first half where both teams had problems scoring, it was Spring Mills which found the scoring means in the third quarter and calmly rolled past visiting Washington, 57-34, last Friday in a boys basketball game that will help settle the seeding for the fast-approaching, six-team Sectional tournament.
The Cardinals held only a low-scoring 24-17 lead at the half but then managed the first 14 points in the break-out third quarter to suddenly move out to a 38-17 lead that was never challenged by the Patriots.
The opening half was a series of offensive struggles by both teams.
Neither team had a point guard who could get his team in any kind of offensive rhythm or find open teammates who could make shots.
Neither team had any players who could score inside with any consistency.
There were few offensive rebounds on either end, and very few planned plays were working on either end.
The result was that even though the Cardinals had only 24 points they still had a seven-point lead in hand.
The semi-closeness of the score changed quickly in a third period where the Cardinals opened up with a fast break fueled by their steals, defensive rebounds and Washington’s turnovers.
Almost all the Spring Mills points came from within point blank range of the basket. Michael Henderson, Hezekiah Dupree and Zane Cogan generated most of the Spring Mills’ scoring . . . and when the decisive quarter ended the Cardinals had outscored Washington, 24-8, in that critical eight-minute span.
Both teams returned to their previously seen low scoring ways in the last period as reserves came onto the floor.
Each side managed only nine points in the final quarter.
The Cardinals shoved the Patriots further into last place in the six-school Sectional standings. Spring Mills is in a scrap with Musselman and Hedgesville to see which two teams can finish third and fourth in the final standings. The third- and fourth-place teams will get to host a first-round Sectional playoff game while both Jefferson and Martinsburg will receive first-round byes in the post season tournament.
Once it fell back by a long double-figure margin, Washington had no way of becoming a danger to the Cardinal lead even though Ryan French made enough three-point field goals to score a team-high 16 points.