‘Lopes back to winning

Avonworth’s Tyreek Davis goes up for a shot during the ‘Lopes’ win over South Side. Photo by Tom Steiner for The Citizen

By JIM RUMBLE

Following last Friday's overtime loss at Aliquippa, the Avonworth boys’ basketball team got back to their winning ways when they hosted South Side Beaver this past Monday.

Displaying good balance on offense with five players scoring in double figures, the Antelopes rolled to a home win against the Rams 78-48.

"I'm just glad we came out and played well after a tough loss at Aliquippa," said 'Lopes coach Dan Bradley.

"Sometimes those feelings and emotions can carry over and I thought we came out pretty good," he said.

Avonworth came out firing from the perimeter to begin the first quarter with Matt Crilley and Garrett Day connecting on consecutive three-pointers. A free throw by Jamal Hughley and baskets inside by Zach Chandler and Hughley had the 'Lopes in front 11-2, but the Rams responded with an 11-2 run to tie the teams at 13-13 with 3:15 remaining in the opening quarter.

Avonworth answered back with three-balls by Day and Tyreek Davis, a fast break score by Crilley and a pair of free throws by Chandler to claim a 23-13 lead to end the first quarter.

Michael Noethiger came in off the bench, scoring four points early in the second quarter, but Chandler dominated from down low on offense with eight points as the 'Lopes out-pointed the Rams 16-6 to extend their lead to 39-19 at the half.

Avonworth obtained a 29-point lead with a 9-0 run to begin the third quarter, but that changed when South Side countered with a run of their own, cutting the Antelopes’ lead to 48-30 with three minutes remaining in the period.
Day stopped the run with a three-pointer from the left corner and Davis banged home a three-pointer off the right side on Avonworth's next trip up the floor.

The 'Lopes outscored the Rams 9-3 over those last few minutes that would give them a 57-35 lead to take into the fourth quarter.

Three-pointers by Noethiger and Cole Jenkins, along with a transition basket by Hughley and two baskets from inside the lane by Chandler gave Avonworth their largest lead at 69-37 with a little under four minutes remaining in the game.

The 'Lopes had a 21-13 point advantage in the fourth quarter that finalized their 78-48 win.

Leading the double digit scorers for Avonworth were Chandler with 18 points, Davis with 16 and Day, Crilley and Hughley each with 10 points.

Commenting on last Friday's loss at Aliquippa, Bradley said, "It was a great game back and forth. We led in the last half minute [of regulation] and couldn't get it done."

The Quips tied the game to send the teams into overtime, where the Antelopes were out-scored 12-6 and were defeated 60-54.

Chandler finished with 22 points followed by Day with 15 points and Hughley with 10 points. Aliquippa (14-0, 9-0) remains on top in section 5AA and Avonworth (10-6, 6-3) is tied for third place with five section games remaining.