Bears nip Bulldogs in league opener
GRAHAMSVILLE, NY — If only the game of hoops had two periods instead of four—at least for the visiting Bulldogs of Sullivan West as they battled the Tri-Valley Bears in the first league game of the season for both squads on Tuesday, December 19.
The home team edged the Dawgs in the first frame 9-8, but in the second period fell behind by four points (13-17), as Sullivan West took a slim 25-21 halftime lead into the locker room.
In the third and fourth frames, the Bears showed they came to play on their home court, outgunning the opposition 14-9 and 20-9 on the way to a 56-43 victory.
In the final frames, the Bulldogs battled hard to keep it close, until Tri-Valley surged to a hard-fought lead that varied between nine and 11 points.
And then it was all over until the next game between these two rivals.
Top-scorers: TV—Chase Botsford 17 points including a pair of threes, and with 12 points each Brennan Healy and Kalic Perry. SW—Alex Unser 11 points and 5/5 at the free-throw line, Kyle Reimer 10 points including a couple of threes, while Brandon Daily and Cody Powell each posted a three.
Stats from the free-throw line: TV 14/24 (58%), SW 7/13 (54%).
“We played hard, but missed opportunities in the second half… we’ve got to learn how to keep playing with a lead even if it’s only three points,” said Bulldogs coach John Meyer.
Summing it up, he added, “They made their shots and their foul shots, that’s the difference.”
Meyer said his team got a bit “panicked” when in the lead:”We’re not used to being in tight games.”
On the topic of sportsmanship and team spirit, before the close of the JV game, the Bulldogs varsity squad lined up in the hallway, and led by Dailey and Hauschild, cheered on their younger classmates to a win.
During the varsity matchup, the home team fans rocked the joint, at times hooting and hollering as the Dawgs set up at the foul line, but when members of the “Dawg Pound” echoed all the noise in the last minutes of the game, Meyer stepped in to quiet things down in respect of the other team.
On the subject of “noise”: this is high school sports folks, not the NBA or NFL!
Kyle Reimer is a 15-year-old junior point and shooting guard for Sullivan West.
“It was a tough loss… we’ve got to put it behind us and move forward,” he said.
Alex Unser is the Bulldogs’ senior center.
“We played our hardest, and in the third quarter just stopped scoring… we’ve got to start from scratch and pick it up for the next game… we’ve got to bounce back.”
Kevin Delaney, coach of the Bears, said of the long-standing rivalry, “It’s always a good game, no matter what.”
Brennan Healy takes to the court for the Bears as a tall-timber forward.
“I thought it went well, we got the win.”