Big Reds fall to GW
PHS can’t upset reigning champion Patriots
PARKERSBURG — Behind the strength of four Bunky Brown 3-pointers and a game-high 27 points, the visiting George Washington Patriots defeated the Parkersburg Big Reds 59-46.
The Big Reds (2-7) kept it close in the first quarter, as Dylan Shaver hit a buzzer-beating 2-point shot to tie the game back up at 13 apiece. That triumph, however, was short-lived.
The Patriots (7-1) outscored Parkersburg by nine in quarter number 2, and Brown was a big part of that, when he contributed 10 points in the second quarter. Gus Eddy had a relatively quiet night, but he poured in five of his seven total points in that quarter.
That was a crucial turning point in the contest, and the balanced scoring from the Big Reds wasn’t enough. Jacob McKnight, Dylan Shaver, Kionte Peacock and Noah Umpleby each got into the scoring column, but they only managed 10 points between them.
“I thought Bunky Brown hit a couple shots, and then we got cold,” Big Reds coach Jeff Mennillo said. “We just never got a run, and they got two runs. We were working out of a hole all night.”
The defending AAA state champion Patriots tend to do that to the opposition, and Wednesday was no different. George Washington kept up a high pace of play and never looked back.
Brown further asserted himself and scored nine of the Patriots’ 13 points in the third, and they were still able to keep up with the Big Reds. George Washington coach Rick Greene heaped a lot of praise on his standout player.
“Well, Bunky started being Bunky Brown,” said Greene. “He’s, if not the best, he definitely should be talked about as they player of the year. I think he’s one of the best players in the state. When you walk on the floor and already have one of the best players to begin with, I thought he played like a senior tonight.”
While not everything went Parkersburg’s way, Mennillo liked the way his guards played. He just wants the best for his guards, and hopes they can become more consistent.
“I think Jacob McKnight is playing at a high level,” said Mennillo. “We just need to get some consistency from our guards. We only get one or two of them going a night.”
Mennillo added his team needed to get better at rebounding and other fundamentals, and they have a bit of time to figure it out. They play the Capital Cougars in a home contest on at 7:30 p.m. Friday.