Knights Ground Blue Eagles 73-69
Magnolia came out like a team on a mission Wednesday, Dec. 27 at New Martinsville, following the hot hand of Leo Herrick to take a 19-12 first quarter lead. However, the Silver Knights fought off the onset and used a balanced scoring attack to come away a 73-69 winner and improve to 6-2 on the season.
The game was, by no means, an easy win, but after seeing Herrick put up 25 first half points – and the Eagles lead by six at the break – Knights coach Rick Leach used a smothering defense in the second half to slow Herrick down. The Knights picked up the pace in the third frame to outscore the Blue, 19-10, and take a three point lead into the fourth. Both teams battled back and forth in the period with Tyler winning the last frame, 25-24, to get the win.
Herrick led all scorers in the game with 36, but it was the balanced attack of the Knights (four double-digit scorers) that gave them the edge. Griffin Phillips led the way for the Knights with 20 points, including two 3’s and a 4-4 showing at the free throw line. Nate Lancaster followed close behind with 16, including a 3 pointer and 5-5 at the line. Mark Rucker ended with 10 points and two 3’s in the fourth quarter, while Tyler West added 10 with three of his own. Kyle Mason was right behind with nine points; Luke Daugherty added six, and Steven Ross scored two.
West also grabbed a ton of rebounds for the Knights (13) and blocked three shots. Phillips aded four assists, three steals and a block, while Lancaster grabbed nine rebounds, two steals and had three assists. Ross also added six rebounds.
Tyler hit 17-22 at the free throw line to 15-20 for Magnolia and canned 25-61 field goals while the Blue Eagles hit 22-65, despite a 10-17 showing from Herrick.
“We are still a work in progress,” said Knights coach Rick Leach.
“We played a little too loose in that first half, but we were testing their shooting, and they responded well. We knew we had to pick up the pace in the second half and close out on defense. These kids follow the game plan to a T. I had to make some substitutions a couple times to get us back on track, but overall I am happy with the results. A win is a win, and we’ll take it and look forward to the next outing.”
Silver Knights Get Easy Win Over Wildcats
Tyler Consolidated jumped out to an early lead and never trailed, en-route to a 75-54 romp over Paden City on the Wildcats home floor. Playing before a packed house, the Silver Knights took a 17-5 first quarter lead and rode a balanced scoring attack to a 33-20 halftime advantage.
After a first quarter that saw the Wildcats shoot 2-9 and turn the ball over eight times, Paden City got on track in the second frame with 15 points to the Knights’ 16, but it was still a little to late. The Wildcats came out after the break and cut the Knights lead to eight, but from then on it was all Tyler Consolidated as they used four double-digit scorers and a 24-9 fourth quarter to put the ‘Cats away for good.
Paden City’s Trey Slider led all scorers with 14, including two 3’s and a 4-6 showing from the free throw line. He was backed by Garrett Cross with 11 and nine rebounds. Slider also added seven rebounds.
Matt Saxon hit for eight, and Ethan Cross added six, while Seth Bohrer and Bryant McKay both scored a bucket. Tylet Consolidated was led by Griffin Phillips and Mark Rucker with 13 points each, while Tyler West added 12 and 13 rebounds. Nate Lancaster stepped up big in the game with 10 points, while adding six assists, three steals and five rebounds. Dylan Roberts scored nine points and had four rebounds, and Mark Wilson added nine points as well. Luke Daugherty, Adam Efaw, Steven Ross and Levi Smith added two each, and Kyle Mason hit a foul shot and added three assists. The Knights were 9-13 from the line while Paden City was 8-14. The Knights also shot 48 percent from the field to 36 for the Wildcats.
Second In A Row
Liberty Harrison High School came to town on Thursday, Dec. 21 to take on the home-standing Silver Knights who had just lost their first game of the season the night before at Ritchie County.
Hoping to get back on the winning track, the Knights jumped out to an 8-4 lead and stretched it to 11-6 at the end of one quarter. The Knights led 17-8 before the visitors went on a run and and outscored them, 18-8, over the final five minutes of the second period, leading by one at hte half, en-route to a 57-51 victory.
Tyler West started out on fire for the Knights, as he knocked down seven points and had four steals and five rebounds in the first quarter. Liberty, however, got hot in the second frame and got five points from three players, plus hit for three 3’s, as they pumped in 20 points to the Knights’ 14. Griffin Phillips hit for six in the quarter for Tyler.
The third period also belonged to Liberty as they put 13 points on the board to the Knights 10. Liberty hit for 17, to 16 for Tyler, in the fourth to get the win.
Leading the way for the Silver Knights was Phillips with 17 points, seven rebouinds, six steals and three assists.
Tyler West ended with 10 points, including two 3’s, while grabbing 13 rebounds and getting four steals. Dylan Roberts and Nate Lancaster each had six points. Steven Ross finished with four points, while Mark Rucker and Kyle Mason each added three. Levi Smith also got a bucket for two points.
The Knights hit 23-54 shots from the floor but only canned 2-10 foul shots for a 20 percent foul shooting percentage.
Liberty hit 8-12 free throws which made the difference in the game.