Bobcats close, but still no victory against RV
Published 2:28 pm Saturday, January 29, 2005
By By ROB BABLER / Niles Daily Star
The Brandywine Bobcats came frustratingly close to winning their first conference game Friday, losing to River Valley at home.
Coach Dave Sidenbender saw his team build a nine-point lead early in the second quarter, only to see it evaporate by the end of the quarter.
To add to the frustration, the Bobcats rallied from a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter, to come within one point of the Mustangs with two minutes left in the game, but could not close the gap beyond that.
Brandywine remains winless in the conference at 0-7, 1-12 overall, while River Valley is 3-5 in the conference, 3-10 overall.
Sidenbender attributed the difference to some breakdowns in his team's working of the full-court press, which the Bobcats used throughout the game.
He said the press started working well, but when River Valley made adjustments, the team didn't respond to them, which led to some easy lay-ups for the Mustangs.
The press was used heavily by both teams, and to an extent, it worked. The teams combined for 36 turnovers, with both struggling against the press at different times, and other times having some success against it.
In the end, Mustang coach Casey Caid liked the results.
The game started like a sprint, with both teams using the press. The pressure on both teams showed, each amassing six turnovers in the quarter.
The Mustangs handled the pressure better to begin with, however, jumping to a 5-0 lead. The Bobcats quickly responded, though, and went on an 11-5 run to finish the quarter. The Bobcats shot well, hitting 55 percent of their shots.
While the offense was good, Sidenbender had concerns about his team's defense even then.
That lead was built to 19-10 early in the second quarter, when sophomore Adam Prescott (11 points) hit a 3-pointer a minute into the stanza.
From there, however, the Mustangs went on a 19-9 run the rest of the quarter. While River Valley adjusted to the press, committing only two turnovers in the second quarter, the Bobcats still struggled to hold on the ball, accumulating another six turnovers.
Five different Mustangs scored in the quarter, led by senior forward Danny Baker's five points. Baker was the game's high scorer with 16 point.
Caid was pleased with his senior's efforts.
He's a senior and he struggled a little early, trying to do too much, but he's finally starting to settle in.
Baker continued his strong play into the second half, and the Mustangs again continued their balanced scoring attack, having five players contribute to a 43-36 lead by the end of the third quarter.
The Bobcats refused to quit, though, and outscored River Valley 12-6 in the first six minutes of the fourth quarter to narrow the gap to 48-49 with two minutes to play.
Brandywine had a chance to tie the game on a 3-pointer, but could not convert.
Despite players being out of position on the press, Sidenbender said he did see some hustle, which he thought was good for the future.
RIVER VALLEY 55
Chad Kuntz 1 3-5 6, Caleb Dryden 3 1-2 7, Matt Grandholm 3 2-4 9, Jeremy Bates 0 0-0 0, Andrew White 4 2-4 10, Jeremy 2 0-0 4, Kevin Zabel 1 0-0 3, Danny Baker 5 6-9 16. Totals: 19 14-24 55
Mike Nagy 1 3-4 5, Alex Newman 1 0-0 2, Matt Wieger 0 0-0 0, Adam Prescott 4 0-0 11, Zach Bennett 1 2-3 4, Justin Ely 0 0-0, DJ Elrod 1 2-3 5, Bill Bussy 3 6-6 12, Kyle Low 1 2-2 4, Matt Beaver 2 2-4 6, Brett Shoemake 0 0-0 0. Totals: 14 17-22 49
River Valley 10 29 43 55
Brandywine 16 28 36 49
Three-point baskets: Kuntz (RV), Grandholm (RV), Zabel (RV), Prescott (B) 3, Elrod (B). Total fouls: River Valley 19, Brandywine 21. Fouled out: Elrod (B), Shoemake (B). Technical fouls: Bates (RV).