Anytime a team scores 19 straight points to start the game, it’s going to be a tough situation to overcome.
That’s exactly what Philipsburg-Osceola encountered Friday night when they traveled to Bald Eagle Area and failed to notch their first win of the season.
The Eagles came out aggressive from the opening tip and strung together eight field goals before the Mounties could get on the scoreboard.
After the first quarter, BEA had seemingly ran away with the game and cruised to its 13th win of the season with a 73-21 victory.
“We came out with a lot of intensity and played,” BEA coach Bill Butterworth said. “ I always say even though they didn’t play well tonight, the teams without a win sometimes are the ones you got to worry about because they are fighting like hell to get a win.
“I started all my seniors tonight to give them a chance and they responded well. They played good, played up tempo game, got a lot of scorers, a lot of transition baskets, which we wanted (and) unfortunately we had a good night and they didn’t have such a good night.”
Bryce Greene highlighted the Eagles’ attack early, as the senior guard scored in double digits when the game clock still showed three minutes and change remaining in the first quarter.
He was a major reason that eight of his team’s first 10 points were fast break points, but he didn’t do it alone. His twin brother, Bryan Green,e distributed the ball very well and put the ball on the money to set his brother up easy buckets. At one point, the duo connected on an alley-oop when Bryan Greene threw the ball up to the rim and Bryce Greene dropped it into the basket.
But it’s not just the Greene brothers that were in sink on the Eagles offense. The entire unit contributed, and Butterworth was pleased with what he saw.
“Those two work together so well, Bryce cuts and Bryan sees him or Bryan cuts and Bryce seems him and Ryan Dyke had a good night tonight,” Butterworth said. “The continuity with the seniors is very good. It’s their last go at it, so they’re not going to go out there and lay an egg, they don’t want to embarrass themselves either, they’re going to play well because we’re having a good season and it takes them all to do that job.”
Butterworth’s squad took their foot off the gas as the game progressed. Still, the Eagles used their speed to their advantage and built a 40-point lead at halftime. The second half was a mere image of the firs,t and often featured Eagles’ breaking down court with multiple man advantage situations.
Bryce Greene led all scorers with 15 points, while Jason Jones and Dyke both finished the night in double-digits with 10 points for the Eagles. Trent Herrington paced the Mounties with 14 tallies and Collin Mauer chimed in with five points of his own.
Despite the tough season that the Mounties and coach Dave McKnight has endured, McKnight hopes that his team is going to continue to improve as the rest of their season unfolds.
“Don’t take anything away from them, Bill does a great job with his program and I really want to compliment them,” McKnight said. “Our kids, they’re working hard (and) playing hard, but we’re not playing real smart sometimes, but I can’t get mad at them, they work hard, they play hard. I’m just trying to stay positive and we have another game on Monday, we got to come out and address it and do it again, that’s why they call it a game.”
Next up for the Eagles is a Saturday afternoon showdown with Punxsutawney, while the Mounties will continue their search for their first win of the season Sunday night at Bellefonte.