MOUNDSVILLE - Teams that play Steubenville this season better be ready to run. A lot.
After falling behind after the first quarter, Coach Mike Haney's team cranked up the pressure during the next 8 minutes. And that proved to be the difference in Big Red's 59-49 decision against John Marshall on Tuesday night at the JM Field House.
''We wanted to try to get into an up-tempo game,'' Haney said. ''I thought everyone came in and gave us great minutes.''
PHOTO BY RICK THORP
John Marshall’s Tyler Brautigan (30) has his shot blocked by Steubenville’s John Linn during Tuesday night’s game.
And when Haney says everyone, he means everyone.
Eleven Big Red players entered the game during the first quarter. Haney substituted at almost every dead ball, keeping fresh legs on the floor and keeping Steubenville looking like Magic Johnson's Lakers of the 1980s.
But while Haney got the tempo he wanted during the opening minutes, Big Red trailed 12-8 after the first quarter. That's when he added full-court pressure to the mix.
Steubenville was able to force a few turnovers, leading to a 20-6 run that gave it a lead it wouldn't relinquish.
Haney said the difference in the first and second quarter was technique.
''We talked to them after the first quarter, trying to settle them down,'' he said. ''We didn't have a lot of shots going in and we were fouling too much.
''I think we had seven fouls after the first and ended up with 10 at halftime. So, in the second quarter, we created a lot of pressure and created turnovers without fouling.''
The pressure was something John Marshall coach Bill Storm expected.
''That's going to happen when you play a team like that and you're inexperienced,'' he said. ''I think our inexperience showed.
''Like I told our kids, we know we don't have a true point guard right now ... we're very inexperienced there. But we have some guys learning the position and what a better place to learn than from (Steubenville).
''They're aggressive and they're good and they played hard. They forced us into some mistakes.''
Big Red was a little light at point guard, as well.
Perigon West, who scored a game-high 18 points in Big Red's 57-38 season-opening victory against Martins Ferry, has a torn meniscus and Haney doesn't expect him back until January.
Dylan Snider started in his place, but one player didn't make a difference for Steubenville.
"We've been very fortunate with the guys we have,'' Haney said. ''We tell the guys all the time that it could be a different guy every night. We're fortunate to have a lot of guys giving us quality minutes.''
Steubenville's Tayari Lavender hit back-to-back layups to start the second half to increase Big Red's lead to 32-20.
The advantage stretched to 16 at 41-25 when Malik Richmond converted two free throws.
The Monarchs (1-1) then went on a 7-0 run of their own to come to within 41-32.
A Justin Wade layup made the score 42-34 late in the third quarter, but Steubenville finished the period on a 6-0 run that put the game out of reach.
Despite the loss, Storm was happy his team stayed even with Big Red in the second half.
''I was really pleased with our half-court sets and our half-court defense,'' he said. ''The transition game left something to be desired, but (Steubenville) is quicker than us and that's going to happen.
''The kids also recognized they had a hard time stopping Wade and they did a good job of getting him the ball.''
Wade had a monster game, finishing with 27 points, going 13 of 16 from the field. Sophomore tanner Filben added 11 points.
Tajuan Lawson and Richmond finished with 11 points for Big Red, while Gio Garcia had 10.