PARKERSBURG-After giving up 65 points in its first loss of the season, Parkersburg South head boys basketball coach Mike Fallon challenged his team to hold Friday night's opponent John Marshall under 50.
The Patriots responded to their veteran mentor's challenge, laying an 83-35 thumping on the visiting Monarchs to improve to 2-1 on the young season.
"We talked about our defensive effort at Brooke," said Fallon. "Our goal was to hold them (John Marshall) under 50 and we did better than that."
Photo by Jeff Baughan
Parkersburg South's Tyler Berry, left, and Wes Mitchem go for a rebound as John Marshall's Cole Sobutka tries to come over the top to knock the ball away. The Patriots won, 83-35.
Better is right.
Senior Wes Mitchem, who tallied 16 points and hauled down nine rebounds on the night, got things rolling with a putback just 36 seconds into the contest. Senior Doug Dennis, who finished with a game-high 19 points, took a Tyler Bolen pass and drilled the first of his five treys on the night to make the score 5-2 with 5:44 showing on the clock.
Then, the Patriots' defense took over as a Bolen steal resulted in Dennis' second triple of the quarter while a Logan Cox theft ended up with Mitchem going two-for-two at the charity stripe. On the ensuing inbounds by the Monarchs (1-2), Dennis came up with the steal and fed Bolen for the easy deuce to make it 12-2 with 5:05 still remaining to be played in the opening quarter.
Bolen closed the hosts' 15-2 run to begin the contest with a triple of his own before John Marshall finally broke its scoring drought with a Cole Sobutka lay-in at the 4:37 mark.
The onslaught continued as Dennis connected for another long range bomb while Cody Monroe added a rebound bucket, Mitchem an old-fashioned three-point play and a lay-in as the Patriots took a 25-7 advantage after the first eight minutes of play.
"We are going to be a pretty tough team to beat when we get on a roll like that," said Fallon. "We have the ability to play with, and beat, any team in the state when we play like that. But, on the flip side, we can also be beat by any team in the state when we play defense like we played at Brooke."
That would not be the case Friday night at the Rod Oldham Athletic Center as the hosts would force 21 turnovers-14 of them being steals-and shot 54.2 percent from the field.
Adding 11 points to the Patriots' cause was Logan Lawrentz while Casey Stoneking and Kyle Thompson chipped in with eight and seven points, respectively. John Marshall was led by Tanner Filben's 14 points. Sobutka added eight points while Evan Magers hauled down nine rebounds.
Parkersburg South will take the next week off before traveling across the Little Kanawha River to take on crosstown rival Parkersburg on Saturday, Dec. 22.