When the Greater Johnstown Trojans are on their game, they can be a handful, and the Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic Marauders found that out Thursday night.
Johnstown showed speed, height and power in racing past Guilfoyle, 70-45, in a Laurel Highlands Conference non-section game at the Pleasant Valley gym.
For speed, the Trojans unleashed point guard Phil Madison, who scored 18 points. The height was 6-foot-4 swing man Dwight Andrews, who tallied 19. The power guy was center Altwan Williams, who muscled his way past the Marauders for 18.
"I was real impressed how our guys came out and played," Johnstown coach Neil Cobaugh said. "Bishop Guilfoyle is a great defensive team and they shoot the ball well, too. If we let them get off early, we could have been in trouble."
That didn't happen, though. Johnstown pressured all over the court from the start, forced BG into 14 first-half turnovers and built a commanding 39-13 lead at intermission.
"We've been preaching to play as a team," Cobaugh said, "and our guys are getting better at that. We certainly did the first half. To hold Guilfoyle to 13 points in the first half was a credit to our team defense, and we shared the ball on the offensive end."
BG coach Josh Baker called three timeouts in the first quarter in an effort to stop the bleeding, but the Marauders never got their ship on course until the second half.
"Even early in the first quarter, I think we ran our offense well and got some shots," Baker said, "but we just didn't make anything."
The Marauders made only 2-of-13 in the first quarter and fell behind, 19-6.
"Give [Johnstown] credit," Baker said. "They do what they do extremely well."
Baker was proud of BG's second-half effort, though. Brandon Drenning hit five 3s while Nate Nardelli and Zach Patterson combined for 14 points as the Marauders outscored the Trojans, 32-31, the last two periods.
"A loss is a loss, but I think we can build some momentum from how we played the second half," Baker said.
With a 14-1 record, Johnstown figures to be one of the favorites in District 6 Class AAA post-season play.
"When we're playing well, we're tough to beat," Cobaugh said, "but I don't think we've played our best game yet."
The Trojans were without three-year starter Snoop Haselrig, who was nursing a leg injury. Cobaugh referred to Haselrig, who also sat out the Trojans' only loss to Hollidaysburg, as "the team's keystone."
"We're looking forward to the playoffs," Cobaugh said, "but our first goal is to win the conference."
"If they make shots from the perimeter, they're going to be tough to beat," Baker added.
JOHNSTOWN (70): Watson 2 2-2 6, Madison 7 4-4 18, Andrews 7 3-4 19, A. Williams 8 2-2 18, Fields 2 0-0 4, Dan Barfield 1 0-0 3, Subich 1 0-0 2. Totals - 28 11-12 70.
BISHOP GUILFOYLE (45): P. Irwin 0 2-4 2, Sullivan 1 0-0 2, T. Irwin 2 2-3 6, Drenning 5 0-0 15, Patterson 5 0-0 10, Nardelli 5 0-0 10, Fulare 0 0-0 0, Snyder 0 0-0 0, Dunning 0 0-0 0, McCloskey 0 0-0 0, Rickens 0 0-0 0. Totals - 18 4-7 45.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Johnstown19 20 17 14 - 70
Bishop Guilfoyle6 7 19 13 - 45
3-point goals: Johnstown 3 (Andrews 2, Dan Barfield); Bishop Guilfoyle 5 (Drenning 5).
Officials: Ted Beam, Dick Wagner, Gary Zimmerman.
Records: Johnstown (14-1); Bishop Guilfoyle (8-7).
JV: Johnstown, 47-41. High scorers-Damien Barfield, J, 22; Damon Rickens, BG, 20.