News · Bruins pull away in second half from Stars

LIZTON – For 16 minutes Wednesday night, the Western Boone boys basketball team found themselves in a decent position against host Tri-West.

The Stars were down 28-21, but out-scored the Bruins in the second quarter and forced Tri-West into seven first-half turnovers.

But the second half was a different story. Tri-West was able to get out in transition and pull away from short-handed Western Boone 78-45.’

 “We aren’t going to make any excuses,” Western Boone head coach Josh Burkett said. “We are down a few guys, and then Corbin (Jones) probably breaks his nose in the second quarter, so we basically had five guys. They played the entire second half. We have to find a way to not foul, play the whole game and try to find a way to compete. That is just going to be the way it is this year. Everybody in the state is going to go through adversity and I was proud of our effort, we just can’t let our mistakes compile.”

Western Boone trailed 10-8 midway through the first quarter, getting all eight points from junior Seth McClaskey.

Burkett said McClaskey has done a good job in the past few months to get himself ready for the season.

“He has gotten a lot stronger, which has helped him be a little quicker,” Burkett said. “He found a way to start guarding last year on the JV and I noticed that and he has brought it into this year. He made a lot of shots in the first half, and probably missed some he would like back in the second half. I never want him to stop shooting those shots, because he is a great shooter and does good things for us.”

The Bruins scored the last seven points of the quarter to go up 17-8 and led by as many as 12 early in the second.

The Stars countered with a 9-0 run to get within 22-19 on a jumper by Jonathan McAtee, and looked like they got within one on the next possession when McAtee hit another jumper, but it was waved off for an illegal screen.

 Tri-West took advantage of the break, and scored the next four points, and took a 7-point lead into the locker room.

The momentum carried into the second half for the Bruins.

The Bruins started the half on a 15-4 run and built the lead to 19.

Western Boone got no closer than 18 the rest of the way.

“We weren’t getting to the foul line as much as we wanted to, and they were doing a good job of being physical and getting to the basket,” Western Boone head coach Josh Burkett said. “It was a snowball effect, and it affected every part of our game.”

Jonathan McAtee had 17 points to lead the Stars, and Garrett Morton had 15.

Western Boone is 0-2 on the year, and are getting ready for a busy stretch where they play four games in six days.

“We can’t give up offense rebounds, and we can’t give up transition buckets,” Burkett said. “Those two things are big, and I don’t know if it was tired legs today, but we can’t make excuses because we are going to have to battle through those things. We have a Southmont team on Friday that is going to be ready to beat us, and so is Fountain Central on Saturday. Then we have Covington on Tuesday and Lebanon on Wednesday. We just have to battle through it.”

Article Courtesy of Will Willems of the Lebanon Reporter

The JV boys’ basketball team was also in action against Tri-West last night and fell to Bruins by the score of 77-49. Their record is now 1-2 and 0-2 in conference play. The team struggled taking care of the basketball in the first half by committing 15 turnovers against the Bruins defensive pressure. Turnovers and not securing defensive rebounds was the difference in the game. The 6 guys that dressed played hard and battled in the second half. Josiah Smith and Kaden Bennington showed great leadership the entire game. Bennington led the team in scoring with 19 points and Josiah had 18 points. Freshman Philip Talbott also had 7 points.