BG rides hot start to victory

There haven’t been too many points of concern for the Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic High School boys basketball team through its first nine games this season.

But the Marauders managed to address one Monday night.

BG has had some difficulty starting some games strong this season. The Marauders had no such trouble Monday, busting out to a 24-4 lead after one quarter en route to a 59-19 non-league rout at the Pleasant Valley gymnasium.

“We’ve been talking a lot about getting off to better starts,” said BG coach Chris Drenning, whose team is now 8-1 this season. “But I don’t think anybody had a right to expect that we would get off to the start that we did tonight. We got off to a good start, and [Central is] normally a good shooting team, but they struggled. Things just snowballed.”

Central (7-4) opened the scoring with a pair of free throws by senior forward Ryan Mills. Then the roof caved in on the Scarlet Dragons, as BG scored the next 11 points and 24 of the quarter’s next 26.

Senior forward Damon Rickens got the onslaught started for BG with a baseline jumper, then drained a 3-point shot from the right corner.

Moments later, senior guard C.J. Fulare made a steal, drove the lane, and dished off a nice pass to Rickens, who dropped in another field goal and was fouled. Rickens, who led all scorers in the game with 13 points, converted the free throw to give BG an 8-2 lead.

Senior forward Jamey Brumbaugh’s fast-break bucket and subsequent free throw staked BG to an 11-2 lead, and after senior guard Trevor Forshey momentarily stopped the bleeding with a field goal for Central, BG went on a 13-point tear to close the quarter.

Fulare’s 3-pointer from the left side, junior forward Brandon Chadbourn’s free throw, junior guard Sam McCloskey’s 3-pointer from the left side, two more field goals by Chadbourn, and another by Brumbaugh enabled the Marauders to close the first quarter with their 24-4 cushion.

“You look pretty smart as a coach when guys are making shots,” Drenning said. “We made shots, and they missed shots that they normally make. We played well, but we were fortunate that they didn’t shoot the ball as well as they normally do.”

Central made only six of 39 shots in the game and fell behind 37-6 at intermission, prompting veteran coach Reggie Nevins to leave his team on the floor at halftime for some extra shooting practice.

“There was nothing much that I could have said at halftime that could have made much of a difference,” Nevins said. “Yelling and complaining wouldn’t have helped anything. I thought that maybe if we practiced shooting, we’d shoot a little better in the second half.”

The Scarlet Dragons did, but not much better, which dismayed Nevins. Central was without the services of three injured starters – Austin Cunningham, Lucas Patterson, and Tristan Greenland, who’s been out all season.

But Nevins wasn’t making excuses.

“[BG] played well and we were pitiful tonight,” he said. “It’s a bad combination that ended up in an embarrassing situation for us. We need more guys to start investing time in basketball and making basketball a priority for themselves.”

BG enjoyed an unexpected breather during a rugged two-week stretch in which the Marauders are playing seven games. They’ll go to Penn Cambria Wednesday and Bishop Carroll Friday before playing four games next week.

Drenning was able to get all 15 players on his roster into Monday’s game, and dump the bench early in the third quarter.

“After the first minute and a half of the third quarter, I didn’t play any starters,” Drenning said. “This was a good situation for us because it helps us get some younger guys and junior varsity players some game experience. They work hard, too.

“We also have a few starters who are nicked up a little bit, and tonight, they had a chance to take a bit of a rest.”

Game notes: BG won the battle of the boards, 29-14, with senior Ben Kasun corraling five rebounds … Marauders won the junior varsity game, 45-42, behind 11 points from Tony Livoti. Colton Kensinger, Eric Ayers, and Dylan Appleman had nine apiece for Central’s junior varsity team … Central hosts Huntingdon in a Mountain League game Thursday night.

CENTRAL (19): Slageweit 2 0-0 4, Lafferty 1 0-0 2, Forshey 1 0-0 2, Mills 0 2-2 2, Brumbaugh 1 2-2 4, Vollkommer 1 2-2 5, Ayers 0 0-0 0, Kensinger 0 0-2 0, Gahagan 0 0-0 0. Totals – 6 6-8 19.

BISHOP GUILFOYLE (59): McCloskey 2 0-0 5, Fulare 2 0-0 5, Rickens 5 1-1 13, Chadbourn 4 1-2 9, Brumbaugh 4 1-1 9, Wolf 0 0-0 0, Little 1 0-0 2, Kasun 1 0-0 2, Gormley 3 0-0 6, Kibler 1 0-0 3, Fiore 0 0-0 0, Kitt 0 0-0 0, Livoti 1 0-0 3, Miller 0 0-0 0, Luther 1 0-0 2. Totals – 25 3-4 59.


Central4 2 7 6 – 19

Bishop Guilfoyle24 13 14 8 – 59

3-point goals: Bishop Guilfoyle 6 (Rickens 2, Fulare, McCloskey, Livoti, Kibler); Central 1 (Vollkommer).

Records: Central (7-4); Bishop Guilfoyle (8-2).

Officials: Tom Cunningham, Bob Gongloff, Gary Scott.

JV: Bishop Guilfoyle, 45-42. High scorers-Livoti, BG, 11; Kensinger, Ayers, Appleman, C, 9 apiece.