TURNOVERS SINK KEYSTONE AGAINST BEAVER FALLS
|March 13, 2004 - PIAA Class AA Boys' Quarterfinals at Slippery Rock University|
By Chris Rossetti
SLIPPERY ROCK – Beaver Falls used a relentless full-court press to wear down Keystone and get an 80-63 win over the Panthers in the PIAA Class AA boys’ basketball quarterfinals Saturday afternoon at Slippery Rock University’s Morrow Field House.
"They are a very quick, very athletic team," Keystone head coach Greg Heath said. "They run their press very well. They are just an outstanding team."
The Tigers (26-4), the second-place team out of the WPIAL, forced Keystone to commit 27 turnovers in the game many before the Panthers reached halfcourt.
"Our bread and butter is our full-court press," Beaver Falls head coach Doug Biega said. "Everything we do on offense is predicated by what we do on defense. If you can make layups, you can score for us. We don’t do a whole lot out of our half-court offense."
Beaver Falls didn’t need a great half-court offense against Keystone, as the Tigers had tons of easy layups and inside opportunities all day long.
"Turnovers were the key," Heath said. "We knew they had a great press and that they really go after you. We had seen them against Jeanette (in the second round), and it was sort of the same story in that game. They forced a lot of turnovers."
Biega said the key to his team’s press is that it never stops.
"We are relentless, and we are kind of stubborn," Biega said. "We just keep going and going until we get out way. We are like babies, we really are. We keep beating you and beating you until you gives us our way and we are happy."
Beaver Falls used a 14-2 run in the first half to break the game open.
The Tigers held a 9-8 lead following a basket by Keystone’s Cody Summerville with 2:20 left in the first half, but thanks to its press Beaver falls went on an 8-0 run over the next 1:30 to take a 17-8 lead with 31.4 seconds left in the quarter.
Keystone got back to within 17-10 at the end of the quarter, but Beaver Falls started the second quarter on a 6-0 run to take a 23-10 lead with 6:47 left.
The Tigers still led by 13 points, 27-14, with 4:27 to go in the first half before Keystone answered with a 7-0 run of its own.
Garrett Heath got the run started hitting three straight foul shots, his first three points of the game, after he was fouled attempting a three with 3:41 to go in the half.
Buck Neely and Heath followed with baskets to get Keystone to within six points, 29-23, with 2:44 left in the half.
Beaver Falls, though, ended the half on an 8-3 run to take a 37-26 halftime lead.
"That was huge," Biega said. "That is what we do. We run a lot of kids in and out and sometimes that stops some of our own runs, but then the kids that are in there wear down their kids. A double digit lead in a state playoff game is tremendous."
In the second half, Keystone stayed in the game thanks to some hot three-point shooting.
Heath, who scored five first-half points, opened the quarter by hitting two three pointers in the first 1:02, and Sam Swartzfager added a three with 5:35 left in the third quarter to get the Panthers within seven points, 42-35.
But Frank Davis stepped up and hit two big three’s for Beaver Falls in a 10-second span to put the game away giving the Tigers a 48-35 lead with 5:12 left in the third quarter.
"From everything I had head and everything we had seen he (Davis) wasn’t suppose to be able to do that, but he did," Greg Heath said. "Those were backbreakers. I thought we were at a point were maybe we could climb our way back into the game."
Davis’ three’s started an 18-7 run for Beaver Falls that put it up 62-42 late in the third quarter before Swartzfager hit another three to make it 62-45 going to the fourth.
In the fourth quarter, Keystone hung around for a while cutting the lead to 11 points, 62-51, early before Beaver Falls was able to pull away late.
Garrett Heath had a tremendous game in the loss for the Panthers. The all-time leading scorer in District 9 history finished with 26 points giving him 647 for the year (22.3 ppg) and 2,215 in his career. He shattered the previous District 9 record of 2,084 points held by Cameron County’s Brandon Housler.
"He is a tremendous player," Biega said. "We so him on film, and we went to the District 9 web site (www.d9sports.com) and read about his entire year. The season he has had is incredible. It was an honor to coach against him. He is a class act. He plays the game the right way. He will be a very good college player. He has all the skills."
Heath was at his best in the second half scoring 21 of his points in the half including five three-pointers.
"If we had one player on offense who could play with them, it was him," Heath said. "We needed to get the ball in his hands, and we gave him the freedom to create and make some things happen on his own. And he did a great job."
Sam Swartzfager added 11 for Keystone.
Jake Anderson led Beaver Falls with 16 points, Jordon Potter added 12 and Lance Jeter and Davis each 10.
Both teams shot the ball well from the free-throw line with Keystone going 14 of 16 and Beaver Falls 24 of 28.
BEAVER FALLS 80, KEYSTONE 63
Score by Quarter
Beaver Falls 17 20 25 18 – 80
Keystone 10 16 19 18 – 63
Beaver Falls – 80
Frank Davis 4 0-0 10, Lance Jeter 4 1-2 10, Jordon Potter 4 4-5 12, Travis Williams 2 2-2 6, Jake Anderson 3 10-10 16, Reshaun Tarver 4 0-0 8, Carliss Jeter 2 5-7 9, Dana Stevenson 2 0-0 5, C.J. Moreland 0 2-2 2, Brandon Tymous 1 0-0 2. Totals 26 24-28 80.
Keystone – 63
Sam Swartzfager 4 1-2 11, Buck Neely 2 0-0 4, Garrett Heath 6 9-10 26, Billy Colwell 2 0-0 4, A.J. O’Neil 2 2-2 6, Scott Perez 1 0-0 2, Cody Summerville 1 0-0 2, Cole Bowser 1 2-2 4, Derek Duffee 1 0-0 2, Andy Cotherman 0 0-0 0, Shawn McGranaghan 0 0-0 0, Clint Yargar 0 0-0 0, Dan Ferringer 0 2-2 2. Totals 20 14-16 63.
Three-Pointers: Beaver Falls 4 (L. Jeter 2, Potter, Stevenson). Keystone 7 (Heath 5, Swartzfager 2).