Crusaders Speed Past Brooke

WELLSBURG – Steubenville Catholic Central and Fairmont Senior continued their impressive starts to the 2009-2010 boys’ basketball season by racking up runaway victories Friday night in the opening round of the John Pizzuiti Holiday Tournament at Brooke High School.

Justin Teramana, one of five seniors in the Crusaders lineup, poured in 27 points as Coach Shawn Tucker’s well-drilled club went up 7-0 just 3 minutes into the game and went on from there to knock off debuting Brooke 69-45. The victory was the fourth against just one loss for Steubenville Catholic.

Earlier in the evening, Fairmont Senor, now 2-0, outscored The Linsly School (1-1) by 22-3 in the second quarter and never looked back in coasting to a 75-46 triumph.

Weather permitting, the third-place and championship games are set for this evening. Linsly and the host Bruins are slated to hook up at 6 p.m., followed by the Fairmont Senior-Steubenville Catholic title scrap at 8.

”It’s fun coaching these guys,” said Tucker, who couldn’t be more pleased with his first squad.

”This is a very unselfish group. The kids play hard and play very well together.”

”Greyhounds” might have been a more suitable nickname last night for the Crusaders, whose transition game was smoking hot from the start.

Goals by Shawn Harlan, Ankur Shaw and Teramana were all the result of quick outlet passes and drives to the hoop at the other end. Teramana nearly added a fourth fastbreak hoop but was fouled while going up under the basket and dropped in 1 of 2 at the free-throw stripe for the early 7-0 cushion.

Shane Paesano finally got the Bruins off the schneid with a triple from behind the circle with 4:28 on the clock.

Mickey Bednar’s layin put the lead back at 9-3 and the Crusaders went on to hold an 18-8 advantage by the end of the first quarter.

After scoring five points during the first 8 minutes, Teramana swished another 13 in the second quarter as Steubenville Catholic went up by 42-25 at the half.

”This was our first ballgame and it was tough for our kids to step out there and play a very good, senior-dominated club,” Brooke coach Dave Reitter said. ”We only have one senior and one other letterman playing with kids that came up from our jayvee squad.

”We’ll get better and start doing the right things it takes to win some games.

“This game wasn’t going to make our season one way or the other.”

Bednar was the only other Crusader in double figures as he finished with 10 points, followed by Shaw with nine and Harlan with eight.

Steubenville Catholic outrebounded the hosts 45-24 and used their hard-nosed, man-to-man pressure to force the ball from Justin Sabo, the Bruins’ only senior. He knocked down a trio of 3-pointers on his way to scoring 17 points.

While pleased with his team’s early success, Tucker said the Crusaders will have their hands full against the talented Polar Bears in the tournament championship game.

”They are fundamentally sound and move very well without the basketball. We’ll also have to be very good on defense. It’s going to take our ‘A’ game if we’re going to have a chance to win,”Tucker added.

Fairmont Senior 75, Linsly 46

Ryan Sevier and Ty Garrison nearly outscored Linsly by themselves as Fairmont Senior followed up its opening victory against Bridgeport, W.Va., with a easy verdict against the Cadets.

Sevier fired in 25 points while Garrison displayed shooting skills all over the court while connecting for 19, 12 of which came in the third quarter.

The Cadets never led but forced three early ties at 2-2 on Kane Boroski’s layup, 5-5 after Ben Weimer’s triple and 7-7 on Akil Blount’s spinner from in the lane. Sevier took an inbounds pass and put in a short shot off the glass to give the Polar Bears the lead to stay.

After pulling ahead 18-12 at the close of the first quarter, Fairmont Senior all but ran the younger Cadets off the floor during the next eight minutes, going on a 12-0 run the start the chapter and the scoring eight in a row following a three-pointer by Linsly’s Weimer.

With the Polar Bears leading 38-15 at halftime, the game was well in hand but Fairmont Senior continued to roll at the outset of the second half. The lead was extended to 58-28 entering the final quarter and Coach Dave Retton pulled all his starters with 5:44 remaining and his team on top by 70-36.

”We passed the ball really well,” said Retton, the son of legendary Fairmont State University Coach Jo-Jo Retton. Dave Retton, a former coach at Steubeville Big Red for two years before returning to his hometown of Fairmont, added,”Because our kids kept looking for the open guy, we got a lot of great shots.”

While admitting he was excited about his team’s 2-0 start, Retton also expressed some caution.

”Right now the offense is a little bit ahead of where we need to be defensively. We also will have to do a little better job on the boards. We gave up too many weakside rebounds and that’s going to bite us if we don’t improve in that area.”

Linsly, which got off to a promising start with a victory against Morgantown Trinity last week, was led last night by Weimer’s 13 points.

Cadets’ Coach Mark Dodd admitted his team was in over its head against the West Virginia Class AAA opponent.

”We scouted them at Bridgeport and knew they were bigger, stronger and faster than us,” he said. ”Our kids tried hard but we have a lot of young players and this was an eye-opening experience for them.

”It’s a learning process for our youngsters and when you look at the rest of our schedule, we are going to have to get better in a hurry.”