Colts crush Canes
The Canes started the game in a zone and the Colts were in a zone, hitting five of 10 'threes' and jumping to a 17 point lead after one quarter. New Castle then went primarily to their half-court press and played Chartiers Valley even, 53-53, the rest of the game.
This is the second time in recent history that a playoff game has so obviously been decided by a decision on which defense to play.
The second game against Uniontown at the Palumbo Center for the right to go to Harrisburg to play in the State Championship, saw the Canes open in a zone defense. A defense they had not played all year. They stuck with the defense until it was too late and the score was out of hand.
This season the Hurricanes have been a zone defense team. In time of need they switch between a half-court trap and a full court press and throw in a little "diamond and one" when the opponent requires.
Chartiers Valley has for many years lived and died by the three point shot. This year they are living by it having lost only once.
Tonight the Canes opened in their 2-3 zone and hoped for the best. The best being the Colts would misfire on their threes and the taller Canes would get the rebounds.
The strategy looked good on Chartiers Valleys first two possessions as they missed threes on each. But after a David Richards three put the Canes on the scoreboard the Colts hit their first triple of the night and retook the lead 5-3.
Chartiers missed on their next three-point attempt but the shooter was fouled and he made two of three free throws. The Colts rebounded the missed free throw and quickly scored to go up by six, 9-3.
After a Hurricanes turnover Chartiers scored again to go ahead by eight at the 4:14 mark.
The Colts missed two more threes before finding the range and they then hit four in a row.
During the Chartiers Valley run the Canes managed only a bucket by Devin Taylor and a free throw by Keenan Moore.
A quarter in which New Castle made only two of 11 field goal attempts ended with the Colts ahead 23-6.
Chartiers Valley missed their first three attempt of the second quarter and Chris Cain moved to the hoop and scored giving the Hurricanes eight points.
After the score New Castle went to their half-court trap. The Colts appeared to have practiced against it but were still not prepared as the Canes created two straight turnovers and garnered four more points to get the score to 23-12 and narrow the gap from 17 to nine.
The Colts then hit a three at 6:25 to up the lead to 14, 26-12.
Chartiers out scored the Canes 17-12 the rest of the quarter hitting just one more three but making six of seven free throws. Their 17 point lead after one period had increased to 19 after two.
The Colts opened the second half as hot as they did the first, hitting four straight baskets, three of which were threes. The Canes were as cold as the Colts were hot missing four straight shots, three of which were threes.
At the 5:31 mark of the third quarter Chartiers Valley led the Red Hurricanes 54-34.
The Canes then forged a tremendous comeback fueled by their trapping defense. The Canes defense forced nine turnovers, five of which were steals to out score the Colts 18-4 over the remainder of the third quarter.
However after three quarters the Canes had only trimmed one point off of their first period deficit and still trailed by 16.
The Canes could not close the gap in the fourth quarter never getting closer than fifteen but never trailing by more than nineteen. The Colts made 14 of 20 free throws in the period for a final score of 76-59.
Devin Taylor and Chris Cain both had 16 points to lead the Canes.