One step closer

Published 6:22 pm Wednesday, March 9, 2005

By By ERIKA PICKLES / Niles Daily Star
WATERVLIET - It doesn't matter how well a team prepares themselves for the quickness of Buchanan, they all seem to be finding out the hard way.
The Bucks took a 72-55 win over White Pigeon, a team they only beat by three points for the first game of the season, Tuesday night to advance them to the Class C Regional Finals on Friday night.
It's not only Buchanan's quickness that has been giving teams problems, its pressure defense has as well.
The Bucks' quickness was not an issue for White Pigeon in the first half though. Neither was its rebounding.
The Chiefs used this to their advantage and got off to a good start. Their one-three-one zone caught Buchanan off guard and forced it to stay on the perimeter. The Bucks tried to pull off some easy basket, but they were unsuccessful on making the shots or they would be stopped by White Pigeon's defense.
The Chiefs went ahead of Buchanan 8-0 halfway through the first. D'Vaughn Frazier made the first basket for the Bucks and Brian Shannnon hit his first and only three for the night with 1:27 left in the first. Tony Robinson was able to pull off two points for Buchanan and went 1-for-2 on the line. A last basket from PJ Pollack on an assisted pass from Jordan Lee tied the score at 10 heading into the second quarter.
Simon Cholometes got the first basket for the Chiefs to start the second quarter, but Pollack nailed a three to put Buchanan up by one point.
Ryan McFall added a basket of his own for White Pigeon and Cholometes was fouled at three point range by Jimmy Washington to put him on the line. Cholometes went 3-for-3 to give White Pigeon the 17-13 lead at the 4:33 mark.
Lee's back-to-back buckets on the next two plays tied the score back up at 17, but Troy Niblock, who was out the first time the two teams met due to an injury, added two points to the Chiefs' score to give them the lead back.
Robinson was able to pull off another basket for the Bucks to tie the score at 19 and made a basket on an assisted behind the back pass from Lee to put the Bucks back ahead by two.
Cholometes and and Nate Saunders both added basktes for White Pigeon and Frazier and Washington also added one bucket each to once again tie the score at 23 at half-time.
Both teams were once again going neck and neck in the third quarter. Both took turns sharing baskets and took turns sharing a one point lead.
Buchanan was able to take a four point lead with a baskets from Gordon Bryant and Frazier, but the Chiefs quickly brought the score back within one.
With 2:47 to go in the third, Buchanan took charge and took advantage of a tiring White Pigeon team. Frazier scored two on an assisted pass from Lee and Lee scored two on an assisted pass from Shannon. Robinson added two and andother assisted pass from Bryant to Lee gave the Bucks a 44-37 lead heading into the final quarter.
Lee scored the first basket three seconds into the fourth quarter and Bryant and Shannon both added a basket to bring the score to 50-39.
Adam Hillman scored the first basket for the Chiefs at the 5:33 mark, but Robinson's basket and behind the back pass to Shannon and one more bucket from Frazier gave Buchanan a 15 point lead.
White Pigeon's exhaustion really showed in the fourth.
The Chiefs couldn't keep up with Buchanan's fast paced pressure defense.
Niblock went 1-for-2 on the line, but Washington and Robinson both added a bucket to bring the score to 60-42.
As the game wound down, so did the Chief's. Shannon, Washington, Bryant and Jeff Kyles all added points to the Bucks' score in the final minutes of the game and claimed the 72-55 victory.
Cholometes lead the Chiefs with 14 points for the night. Saunders had 11 and McFall had 10.
Buchanan had four players in double-digits for the game. Robinson lead with 17 points, Lee had 16, Shannon had 14 and Frazier had 10 for the Bucks.
The Bucks will play the winner of the Lawerence/Kalamazoo Christian game, which is being played tonight at 7 p.m. at Watervliet.
The final game will be Friday night at 7 p.m. The winner of that game will advance to Quarterfinals.
BUCHANAN (72) Jeff Kyles 1 0-0 2, D'Vaughn Frazier 5 0-0 10, Brian Shannon 4 1 3-5 14, Kyle Tracey 0 0-0 0, Jordan Lee 8 0-0 16, Tony Robinson 8 1-2 17, Nate Brewer 0 0-0 0, PJ Pollack 1 1 0-0 5, Taylor Johnson 0 0-0 0, Gordon Bryant 1 1 2-2 7, Jared Rusher 0 0-0 0, Jimmy Washington 0 1-4 1, Marquis Hall 0 0-0 0, Jason Kuntz 0 0-0 0, Eric Cole 0 0-0 0.
WHITE PIGEON (55) Dan Schutter 0 2-2 2, Tyler Nichols 0 0-0 0, Jimmy Shoesmith 0 0-0 0, Simon Cholometes 5 4-5 14, Louie Harrington 0 0-0 0, Bobby Slack 0 0-0 0, Nate Saunders 4 1 0-0 11, Cody Alexander 0 0-0 0, Troy Niblock 3 0 1-2 7, Michael Severns 0 0-0 0, Ryan McFall 5 0-0 10, Adam Hillman 3 1 0-0 9, Blake Erbe 0 0-0 0, Michael Schmeling 0 0-0 0, Ian Copenhaver 0 0-0 0.
BUCHANAN 10 23 44 72
WHITE PIGEON 10 23 37 55