Tigers’ defense paves way for BEC rout

by Greg Ceilley
of The Review staff


BRYCE PEDRIN of Howards Grove tries to drive past Mishicot’s Bernard Zipperer in Friday’s BEC basketball game. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley BRYCE PEDRIN of Howards Grove tries to drive past Mishicot’s Bernard Zipperer in Friday’s BEC basketball game. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley HOWARDS GROVE – The Howards Grove boys basketball team prides itself on a strong defense. The Tigers’ aggressive man-to-man defense ignited a 65-42 thumping of visiting Mishicot Friday night.

The Tigers upped their Big East Conference record to 2-0 (4-0 overall). The Indians slipped to 0-2 in the BEC (0-2 overall).

HG had an outstanding 14 steals, led by Bryce Pedrin and Jack Baldwin with three each. The Tigers converted several of the steals into baskets.

The Tigers took command of the game with a 15-5 run in the fi- nal 3:19 of the first half which gave them a 33-23 halftime lead. Defense fueled the spurt which started when Caleb Holzman stole the ball and was fouled intentionally on a breakaway.

Holzman then sank 1 of 2 free throws after the foul and HG also gained possession. The senior forward then buried a three-pointer which gave the Tigers a 22-18 lead.

After Bernard Zipperer’s basket inside pulled Mishicot to within 22-20, the Tigers reeled off seven straight points to go up 29-20 with 1:10 left until halftime. Holzman hit a short jumper, Bryce Pedrin con- verted a three-point play after Peter Grimm’s steal and assist, followed by Jack Baldwin’s layup which came after Grimm’s steal and assist.

Holzman’s follow-up basket made it 31-23. Pedrin gave HG a 33-23 advantage when he scored a layup with only one second left off his steal.

HG blew the game open with a 20-6 tear to start the second half which gave it a 53-29 lead at the 7:50 mark. The Tigers’ tenacious defense caused seven Mishicot turnovers during the run which saw the Indians attempt few uncontested shots. Eric Reinemann’s six points keyed the Tigers’ spurt.

Pedrin, a senior guard/forward, led a balanced Tiger offense with 17 points, including a team-high 14 in the first half. Reinemann hit 12 points in the game.

The Tigers were only 2-for-24 from three-point range but used their big height advantage to score several baskets inside.

“We started a little slow. We came out in the second half and had a big defensive presence – guys were getting steals and fast-break points,” said Pedrin.

“Our transition was huge tonight. We pride ourselves on defense. We need defense to really get us going on offense. We played well.”

Reinemann ripped down a teambest 11 rebounds. Grimm and Reinemann led in assists with two each.

Pedrin and Baldwin had a teamhigh three steals apiece. Holzman led in blocked shots with two.

“Minus the first 14 minutes, it went pretty well. We came out flat. We couldn’t knock down shots, gave up some easy shots and didn’t box out [on the defensive glass],” said Tiger head coach Wade Georgeff.

“Peter plays very good defense on the ball. Derek Stauss made some nice moves inside which helped open up driving lanes.

“Eric is just a hustle player. He’ll get those rebounds for you. Caleb played well off the bench and gave us the spark we needed,” said Georgeff.

Holzman, who was seeing his first action of the season after coming back from an ankle injury, tallied nine points, all in the first half.

“We work a lot on that in practice – converting turnovers into baskets.

We capitalized on the turnovers which was a key,” said the coach.

Nicholas Bartz paced the Indians in scoring with 14.

JUNIOR VARSITY GAME

The Tigers cruised to an 82-38 win in the JV 1 game. Nic Koenig sparked the HG attack with 20 points, followed by Blake Pedrin with 16 and Justin Miller, 13.

Miller led HG in rebounds with 12 and Koenig had 10.

“Our full-court pressure created many turnovers in the first half to allow us to jump to a 31-point lead,” said Tiger coach Bob Vandoske.


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