Second-half scoring explosion gives Bengals a road win
FEB. 2, NELSON H. KOBREN MEMORIAL GYMNASIUM-
The Blake Bengals are one of Montgomery County's hottest teams this year and tonight they showed it, overpowering Blair in a 92-69 victory. The Blazers caught the Bengals off-guard with a second quarter full of solid team passing and Blair scoring, but it did not take the Bengals long to buckle down and regain control of the game on both ends of the court.
The Blazers definitely showed more offensive prowess than in recent games, especially their last showing against Springbrook, but were outclassed by the explosive Bengals, who took Blair apart with shooting from beyond the arc and on dangerous, slashing drives. There were some bright spots for the Blazers, including senior Makonnen Brown who, while he did not start in either half, led Blair's scoring both with his quick passing and 13 points of his own. Sophomore Ross Williams was the only Blazer outside threat, and he also played tough at the other end, fighting for rebounds against the Blake big men. He will certainly become an increasingly vital part of the Blazer squad in his future seasons.
After a lackluster 10-point opening period, the Blazers broke out in the second. Brown led a 25-point scoring drive that brought Blair within five at the half. Blake was obviously caught off-guard by the Blazers' gutsy play. The team fought tenaciously for balls on both ends, junior Jacob Wade was especially scrappy tonight, and used their speed and quick passing to blow past the Bengals' defense. Sophomore center Richard Chavez showed promise tonight, grabbing blocks and baskets whenever he could and working well with Blair's guards, who did an especially good job of distributing the ball.
Unfortunately, Blake came back in the third seemingly unfazed by the Blazer assault. The full-court press that they had employed much of the game became suddenly impossible to break through; even inbounds passes were challenges for the Blazers. On offense the Bengals nailed one mid-range jumper after another and, while they did not enjoy any significant size advantage, used their superior ball-handling skills and team offense to take it to the basket. Blair kept up the pace they had set earlier, but started missing more and more of the simple post shots and lay-ups that had already set them back in the first half. Without any real dependability down low on offense, the Blazers could not hope to fight back against the Bengals.
Wade showed up with his best play of the season, grabbing eight points in the third alone, but even if he had had more help from the rest of the Blazers, it may not have been enough. As the Bengals pulled away in the third and started scoring like mad in the fourth, they really looked a cut above their opponents. The Bengals slashed in the lanes all night, creating openings for the dunks that sent the sizable Blake contingent roaring. They truly clamped down on the Blazers and forced the game their way, and once Blake got going there was no stopping them. Even with an above-average offensive performance the Blazers could not touch Blake, probably the toughest opponent the Blazers will face all season.
The Blazers' next game is at home against Sherwood at 7 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 4
Dan Greene. Dan, alright fine, VJ, is proud to be a senior at Blair and a member of the best paper. Ever. He's really funny, trust him. As managing sports editor and ombudsman he enjoys sports and ombudsing. Dan also enjoys literature, soccer and crude humor. One … More »