Shadyside snaps skid by routing Bellaire
SHADYSIDE – Having lost four consecutive games, three of them by two points each, Shadyside Head Coach Ed Andes was just hoping to get a full, four-quarter game out of his kids and watch them finish with a win.
Tuesday night his Tigers, led by sophomore Elijah Brock inside early and senior Jacob Visnic and junior Korey Beckett later, came out of the gates roaring and gave their veteran head coach exactly what he was hoping for.
Brock scored half of his game-high 20 points in the first quarter while Beckett tallied 13 of his 15 in the second half and Visnic buried four triples as Shadyside grabbed a lead and never looked back in grabbing a convincing 68-39 victory over rival Bellaire inside the Tigers’ Den.
“We have had a lot of close losses lately and I really just wanted them to come out and play four quarters (Tuesday),” Andes said. “We have been right there but haven’t been able to finish. Fortunately, the kids did a great job executing and we got it done against Bellaire.”
The game was close early with the hosts holding a 9-8 edge at 3:40 of the first before Brock hit three consecutive shots in just over a minute to make it a 15-8 count. After a Jaiden Kesterson field goal, Visnic bombed in a triple before Ben Wach capped the first quarter scoring with a three with five second to go to put Shadyside (5-8) up 21-10 after one.
While Brock had 10 points and four rebounds in the first quarter, he also made a huge contribution by drawing two quick fouls Jaren Cash, sending him to the bench at 5:27 of the opening frame. He picked up his third at just 11 seconds into the second chapter.
Another Kesterson hoop made it 21-12 to begin the third before Beckett canned a field goal and Mason VanNest and Visnic both hit long-distance shots to push the margin to 28-12 at 4:40 of the half. Bellaire cut the deficit to 30-19 and missed a late layup before Wach again beat the buzzer with a trey to end the half at 33-19.
Beckett (8) and Brock did all of Shadyside’s damage in the third as the hosts led by 20 after three at 47-27 and extended the margin to as many as 30 on three occasions in the final chapter.
“Ben Wach’s shots at the end of the first and second quarter really got us going.” Andes added. “It’s things like that that really help you out. “Elijah (Brock) did a great job inside early on and getting that second foul on Cash was pretty big. He did a good job taking the ball right at him.
“This was really fun to watch (Tuesday). The kids were focused, and I am very happy for them. They have been working hard and it’s always a good thing to beat a rival.”
Visnic finished with a double-double, scoring 14 points and pulling down 10 rebounds as Shadyside grabbed a nice 31-19 edge off the glass. The Tigers did turn the ball over 14 times, two more than their guests. Cash and Kesterson each finished with 11 points for the Big Reds (6-8).
“Brock is getting a lot better and he is a good athlete,” Bellaire Coach J.R. Battista commented. “Overall, they just made shots on us and the inside opened up the outside. They have some very good guards that can shoot the ball and they were all making shots (Tuesday), you can’t let them make them early and expect them to quit making them later.
“They also murdered us on the boards which is what I really didn’t want to happen. They were just a lot better and more physical than us and that normally adds up to a loss.”