Boys reach 7-7 mark
With their victory over Stroudsburg last Friday night, the Whitehall boys basketball team has positioned themselves for a postseason berth heading down the home stretch.
While the win lifts their record to 7-7 on the season, their remaining schedule requires a lot of heaving lifting, beginning with Tuesday’s clash against William Allen. Each of the seven teams remaining on their schedule currently have winning records. Moreover, those teams have combined for 63 wins versus 28 losses.
But with Friday’s win, they’ll have some clear momentum heading into those slate of games. In fact, since the start of 2019, the Zephyrs have won three of their last four games. Their sole loss was to Liberty, a tough eight-point loss in their lowest offensive output of the season.
On Friday, they defeated the Mounties 66-57. They fell behind by two points after the first quarter, but rallied during the next two quarters to take a 49-39 lead heading into the fourth quarter. They dug in and won the game by nine for their seventh conference win.
Head coach Jeff Jones said that their ability to get the ball down low was the key to the victory. Once they got the ball inside, Dylan McGinley got to work. He finished the game with a career-high 26 points.
“We executed the game plan of getting the ball inside as much as possible,” said Jones. “Dylan was able to score at high percentage.”
The junior has now scored double figures in 10 of their 14 games this season. He has emerged as the team’s leading scorer and one of the best post players in the league.
Jones said that once again they were hampered by injury as guard Joey Lisicky was sidelined. He said that their bench stepped up, notably Shyheim Foster who was a major contributing factor.
All season long, Jones has been able to rely on the play of senior Ricky Melosky who orchestrates the offense. In addition to running the point, Melosky has been continually attacking the basket this season. He finished with 11 points in the win against Stroudsburg.
“He [Melosky] continues to do a fine job handling the pressure that Stroudsburg put on us,” said Jones.
Jones said that their defense pushed the Mounties out of their comfort zone for much of the game. They became a perimeter team and that played into Whitehall’s hands.
“Our matchup zone forced them into an almost strictly three-point shooting game,” said Jones. “They shot 34 three-point shots.”
The Zephs will hold their athletic Hall of Fame induction ceremony prior to Friday’s game against the Golden Hawks. This year’s inductees include Donald H. Gantz, Tracy (Golly) Becker, Rob Gontkosky, Jerry Radocha and Chad Schwenk.