Neshannock boys roll to win
Neshannock (83) Vs. Western Beaver (40)
Jan 12, 2010
By JOE SAGER
Neshannock High’s boys basketball team is determined to defend its WPIAL Section 1-A championship.
The Lancers got off to great start last night.
Neshannock overwhelmed Western Beaver, 83-40, in the league opener for both squads.
“It’s going to take a lot of effort to get to where we want to be at the end of the season. We want to win the section again. It was fun last year and I am looking forward to it again,” said Neshannock junior Brandon Marinelli, who came off the bench to score 26 points. “We had a couple big losses this year. We decided to come out our first section game and take it to them strong. We were prepared.”
The Lancers (8-3 overall) certainly came out focused in the first quarter. They executed their offense well — moving the ball with quick passes and finding open players, who either swished their shots or took the ball to the basket and drew a foul.
The hosts clamped down on the other end of the court, too, with a stifling defensive effort that kept the Golden Beavers (5-2) without a bucket for half the period.
When the horn sounded after Bobby Nittinger’s 3-pointer, Neshannock held a 27-12 lead.
Limited to five field goals in the second stanza, the hosts swished 8 of 9 free throws to boost their lead to 46-22 at halftime.
“I was very happy with the way we played. I have been dissatisfied with a lot of our defensive play up to this point. Not even looking at the outcome of the game, but just the way that we played is what I like,” Neshannock coach John Corey said. “We set the tempo from the start. I was very happy with our mental focus on both ends.”
The Lancers kept up the intensity in the third quarter as five different players tallied at least a bucket.
“We started the year off and we were very unselfish; we shared the basketball and we had a lot of guys averaging in double digits,” Corey said.
“For whatever reason, we kind of got away with that and I wasn’t very happy about that. This was a night where we had a great performance; we shared the basketball and our ball movement on offense was terrific. That’s what it’s going to take. We have a lot of good players, but we have to move the basketball and find the open guy.
“This needs to feed on itself and continue. Our first section win is good.”
Nittinger led Neshannock’s balanced offensive attack with 27 points to go with Marinelli’s 26. Joey Fontana had nine points, while C.J. VanEman and Eric Bruening both had six and John Sansone added five.
“We all play like we are a family,” Marinelli said. “It switches up who has the high score. We don’t have just one great guy. We have six great guys and more good players other than that. We just want to keep it going.”