STEUBENVILLE - Post-game pizza might be a normal reward for the Big Red basketball team after a solid game. But after Friday's 87-63 win over East Liverpool, Steubenville received an even better incentive from head coach Mike Haney.
The team was excused from today's regular morning practice.
"It'll be nice to sleep in, but it's right back to practicing on Sunday," said Big Red forward Adam Sterling.
SWAT TEAM — Big Red freshman Charles Reeves blocks a shot attempted by East Liverpool’s Owen Crawford in the second half of their game on Friday at the Crimson Center. Steubenville won 87-63. Reeves finished with 10 points and three blocks. Big Red is back in action on Tuesday, hosting Cardinal Mooney.
Steubenville is actually spending Saturday evening as a team in Youngstown scouting its next opponent, Cardinal Mooney.
The Cardinals are participating in a showcase at Struthers Field House against LaBrae. The Vikings are led by 6-foot-8 senior Peyton Aldridge who has committed to play collegiately at Davidson.
"It'll be a nice time for us to see somebody new," Haney said. "We don't know much about Mooney's team this year so we hope to get a good gauge on them (tonight)."
Big Red 87, East Liverpool 63
East Liverpool 8 20 18 17 63
Big Red 17 18 26 26 87
EAST?LIVERPOOL (1-2): Crawford 4 0-0 8, Davidson 4 2-2 13, Austin 2 0-0 4, Cunningham 5 6-8 18, English 2 0-0 4, Reynolds 0 2-4 2, Emmerling 2 3-3 7, Long 1 1-2 3, Adkins 2 0-0 4. TOTALS: 22 14-20 63. 3-pointers: Davidson 3, Cunningham 2.
STEUBENVILLE (2-0): Wallace-Jones 1 1-2 3, Herring-Hall 8 7-9 23, Wolfe 1 0-0 3, Herrington 2 2-2 8, Reeves 4 2-4 10, Sterling 10 0-0 24, D. Smith 2 1-1 5, C. Smith 3 0-0 6, Williams 1 0-0 3, Thomas-Miller 1 2-2 2. TOTALS: 32 15-20 87. 3-pointers: Sterling 4, Williams, Herrington 2, Wolfe.
As for Friday night, Haney's gauge on his team was right where he wanted it to be.
Sterling led with 24 points, grabbed 14 rebounds, had two assists and recorded two blocks.
"The thing I like best about him, he's a good shooter and everything, but he got some great rebounds," Haney said. "That's the best he's ever boarded for us. He was great on the offensive glass."
Brandon Herring-Hill added 23 points with two assists, two steals and a block.
"I liked the intensity right from the opening tip all the way until the end," Haney said. "We're pretty happy. The first game we started out real slow and we wanted to change that."
A Sterling 3-pointer put Big Red (2-0) up 17-7, its first double-digit lead with 1:28 remaining in the first quarter. Another 3-pointer by the 6-foot-5 senior gave his team a 26-15 lead midway through the second quarter.
His triple in the third helped extend a 15-4 run which saw the Steubenville lead balloon to 15 points at the 4:28 mark of the quarter.
"It's pretty fun," Sterling said of knocking down long range shots. "The crowd went crazy and we all fed off it.
"It's the perfect start to our season. We hope more fans can come out and watch us becuase it's going to be an exciting season. They know what we're about now."
Big Red lead 17-8 after the first quarter and East Liverpool (1-2) closed the gap to four points towards the end of the second. Steubenville took a 35-28 lead into the locker room at halftime.
"We got through the first half OK but we just played half-court man," haney said. "We're not as deep as we want to be. We usually press from start to finish but we picked that up in the third quarter and it worked."
During its big run right after halftime, Steubenville picked up the Potters at full-court and created four early turnovers. In all, Big Red forced 18 turnovers. Charles Reeves had two steals and four blocks, Dionee Wallace-Jones had three steals and Lucas Herrington had two steals.
Ten Big Red players contributed to the scoring output. Reeves added 10 points, while Herrington scored eight.
Hayden Cunningham paced East Liverpool with 18 points, while Isaac Davidson added 13.
Owen Crawford grabbed nine rebounds, while Aaron Long had seven.
"It's never good to lose like that," said Potters coach Matt Cashdollar. It happens, but you never want it.
"True character is revealed when you respond from losses. We'll see what we got and what we can do from here."
East Liverpool faces Oak Glen on Tuesday, while Big Red will host Mooney.