Northwest used a strong second half to beat a very good shooting East team during a home game Tuesday night, grabbing their first win of the season 56-43. East stayed on top during the first half, outscoring the Mohawks 14-10 in the first quarter and maintaining a 26-25 lead at the half. East started the game with strong shooting from Will Shope who led the Tartans in scoring with 14 points in the game, including four 3’s. Northwest knew they had to shut him down for the night if they wanted to win, and Evan Throckmorton of Northwest was the player who accomplished that for his team defensively.
After the second half of the game began, Northwest would quickly change the pace of the game when Chase McClay scored two minutes into the half, stole the ball back on the inbound pass and scored a second basket. Billy Crabtree quickly followed up with a steal, passing to Throckmorton who hit a 3 for the Mohawks, helping extend their lead to 37-30. Northwest would end the third quarter on top 42-36.
Shortly into the fourth quarter, Ashton Hall would force a Tartan turnover as Braden Borens would hit the shot from the paint for the Mohawks. East answered back, scoring on the next two drives, but a stolen ball by Throckmorton would again bring the momentum back to the Mohawks. Crabtree would score on a steal, bringing the score to 54-40. East answered back with a three but would be unable to monopolize on scoring again. After a couple of foul shots by Crabtree and a final basket for the Mohawks, the game ended at 56-43.
Northwest head coach Jason Smith was proud of the way his team played to get their first win of the season, “Chase McClay played his butt off for us tonight, he played one of his best games this year. Throckmorton did an outstanding job for us. I know the boy has to be worn out, but I just couldn’t take him out. He did an amazing job defending Shope. Shope is an amazing player. You leave him open, he will hit it. The time I took Throckmorton out in the fourth, Shope scored on us. We always say, you have to win the third quarter, we came out and really did well. I am very proud of these boys tonight.”
Northwest was led in scoring by Crabtree with 13 points, McClay followed with 12 and Throckmorton added 10 in the win. Northwest had five other players score as well: Hall (8), Borens (6), Caleb Crabtree (4), Bryson Carver (2) and Jake Ellis (1).
The Tartans had six players score for night: Shope had 14, Sean Hollen, Austin Smith and Kyle Flannery scored eight points each, with Hagen Metzler adding four and Chandler Carver with one point in the loss.
East head coach Adam Bailey sees room for improvement from his team over the course of the long season, “Shope played well and at times was hot early and made some shots. I thought as a team, we executed more of what we wanted to do in the first half. There toward the second half, it started getting away from us, I thought we let our emotions get to us. We let them speed us up and play out of control, I think that was the turning point in the game there in the third quarter. Northwest came out and went on a big run and we just didn’t have an answer for it tonight. We forced a lot of quick shots tonight, some from inexperience, some from playing out of control. It’s just something we have to work on and get better at.”
Northwest will travel to Portsmouth West Friday night in their first SOC II match of the season.
The Tartans will travel to Beaver on Friday night for their first SOC I game with Eastern Pike.
Reach Jacob Smith at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1930, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter @JacobSmithPDT