Glendale topples West Branch, 79-66
Friday, January 31, 2014
By Andy Stine Sports Writer
ALLPORT - In their first meeting of the year back on Jan. 3, things were much different for the Glendale and West Branch boys basketball teams.
The Warriors had a 25-point lead at halftime and cruised to the finish line for the win. Fast-forward to Thursday evening, and the results were almost entirely flip-flopped.
The Vikings had a 13-point lead at halftime and held off any West Branch comebacks as they defeated their Moshannon Valley League foe, 79-66.
"This is, by far, the best game we've played so far this year," said Glendale head coach Ryan Pastva. "We limited the turnovers. All year, I've been saying turnovers, turnover, turnovers.
"We've had over 20 for almost every game this season. We only had 16 tonight. Some of that was down the stretch when they were trying to get back in it, and that will happen.
"Our guys made smart decisions with the basketball. They pushed the tempo and didn't let them get set up on defense."
"This whole week so far has been disappointing," said West Branch head coach Danny Clark. "The effort is there, but we're just a step slow it seems in these last two games. We gave up 79 tonight and 74 on Monday night (against Mount Union). It goes right back to defense."
Glendale junior and leading scorer Shea O'Donnell had been held to totals of 12, 11 and 14 points in his previous three career meetings against the Warriors. O'Donnell exploded for 24 points and 15 rebounds on the night before fouling out with five minutes to go in the game.
"From the game we played against him this year and the two games last year, we've held him in check," said Clark. "He took that to heart tonight. He came to play."
"Just think about what he could've done if he hadn't fouled out," said Pastva. "He did a great job. He's been our rock all season. He's our go-to guy."
The Vikings held a 21-16 lead after the first quarter before pulling away late in the first half. O'Donnell and Anthony Barnhart led the charge in the half as the duo combined for 31 of the team's 40 points at the break.
Barnhart joined O'Donnell as the leaders in the point column with 24.
"They hit a lot of shots," said Clark. "Anthony had a great game. Shea hit some outside shots. Those two are tough to guard. They shot the ball well, and we didn't have an answer for it tonight."
The Warriors made a comeback in the third quarter and cut the deficit to five points just halfway through the period. Kody Trude hit a pair of 3s, and Mike Pennington also splashed a trey in the four-minute span to cut Glendale's lead to 47-42.
The Vikings answered with seven straight points before Pennington's last second 3-pointer at the buzzer to make the score 54-45 with one quarter to play.
Once again, the Warriors began the fourth quarter cutting away at the Glendale lead. This time, O'Donnell put the stop to the West Branch run, which came to as close as six points. O'Donnell put in four points before fouling out with five minutes to go.
After O'Donnell left the game, another forward took over from where he left off. Matt Schultz scored seven points in the final period and had 15 in the game.
"Due to certain matchups, Schultz hasn't been getting the playing time he's been accustomed to," said Pastva. "Tonight, we thought we had an advantage on post play, and we did. When he got in there, he made the most of it. He was looking out for the best interests of the team, which is awesome."
"When (O'Donnell) fouled out, we were down 10 and I still had faith in our guys in coming back," said Clark. "But we let Schultz just do whatever he wanted to do, and he controlled the game after that. It was a great team effort for those guys."
Nate Braniff entered the game for the first time in the middle of the fourth quarter and also assisted Schultz in icing the contest. The sophomore collected nine points and two rebounds in his four minutes on the court.
"I have to credit Braniff. I kind of threw him into the fire," Pastva said. "He hasn't been seeing a lot of minutes. If he keeps doing what he did, he'll be seeing some more time."
Pennington led the Warriors with 24 points on the night, while Trude put in 19 and Austin Krise chipped in with 11.
Glendale improved to 5-10 overall, 4-2 in the Mo Valley League and 2-7 in the Inter-County Conference.
"This is a big confidence booster," said Pastva. "Our guys haven't quit, which is awesome to see. Things haven't gone our way. We're 5-10 and they're still doing what they have to do to try to win. That's a tribute to them."
West Branch dipped to 9-7 overall, 3-2 in the MVL and 6-5 in the ICC.
The Warriors are back in action tonight when they travel to Harmony, while Glendale visits Williamsburg on Saturday.
Glendale won the junior varsity game, 33-28. Braniff led the Vikings with 22 points, while Tyler McDonald had 10 points for the Warriors.
Barnhart 8 3-4 24, O'Donnell 9 4-5 24, M. Schultz 5 5-8 15, Sinclair 1 1-2 3, Potutschnig 2 0-0 4, Wigfield 0 0-0 0, M. Kimberly 0 0-0 0, Braniff 3 3-5 9, Mencer 0 0-0 0, J. Schultz 0 0-0 0, C. Kimberly 0 0-0 0, Landeck 0 0-0 0. Totals: 28 16-24 79.
A. Krise 5 1-2 11, Trude 7 1-3 19, S. Krise 2 4-4 8, Koch 1 0-0 2, Pennington 9 2-2 24, Martin 0 0-0 0, N. Kerlin 1 0-0 2, J. Kerlin 0 0-0 0, Emigh 0 0-0 0, Foster 0 0-0 0, Jones 0 0-0 0, McDonald 0 0-0 0, Eboch 0 0-0 0. Totals: 25 8-11 66.
Three-pointers: Barnhart 5, O'Donnell 2; Trude 4, Pennington 4.
Score by Quarters
Glendale 21 19 14 25-79
West Branch 16 11 18 21-66