Deer Lakes seals victory with late surge
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Not only is Deer Lakes finding ways to win, but it's doing so in an economical fashion.
And, while getting contributions from each of their eight seniors, the Lancers closed this deal, scoring the game's final 15 points and holding visiting Apollo-Ridge scoreless for the final 2:58 to seal a 55-42 victory Tuesday night.
The win keeps the Lancers (12-5, 6-1), who have won five in a row, in first place in Section 1-AA. Their march toward their first section title since 1992 continues.
Apollo-Ridge, which had a 14-0 run early in the fourth, falls to 12-5, 4-3.
“This game was a testament to our seniors,” Deer Lakes coach Jon McKay said. “We were tested, and I was very impressed with the way we responded.”
Tim Jaczesko scored a team-high 16 points, including seven in the fourth quarter, J.J. Kowalkowski added 13 and Cody Keenan had 11, all in the first eight minutes for the Lancers, who hit seven 3-pointers.
Deer Lakes built a 39-28 lead after three quarters and appeared ready to pull away. But Apollo-Ridge rallied, sparked by junior forward Mitchell Johnston, who scored seven straight points. Evan Davis made a 3-pointer to give the Vikings their first lead, at 42-40, but it was all Lancers from there.
Deer Lakes' Zack Burke made a 3-pointer to retake the lead, and Jaczesko had two steals and scored five straight points to push the advantage to 50-42 with 1:03 to go. His two free throws made it 52-42.
Jaczesko, Kowalkowski and Tim Cresta all hit two 3s.
“We turned the ball over at critical times,” Apollo-Ridge coach Matt Gourley said. “We're getting better in our half-court, but we need to take better shots. ”
Deer Lakes allowed its lead to dwindle. But it stayed patient until its game-clinching run.
“When we go cold, we tend to let teams make a run,” McKay said. “We knew tonight the key was stopping Tre (Tipton). We did a good job from that standpoint.”
Apollo-Ridge won the teams' first meeting, 87-69, controlling the up-and-down tempo from the start.
In that game, Tipton scored a season-high 24 points.
This time, Deer Lakes slowed things down and forced the athletic Vikings to be more deliberate.
“They were taking the ball to the hoop and we were taking it off of them,” Kowalkowski said. “We went to our 2-3 (zone) and closed out on their shooters.”
Alex Smith led Apollo-Ridge with 13, 10 in the first half. Tipton was held to two, although he tried to be more of a facilitator than scorer in the half-court.
Bill Beckner Jr. is the local sports editor of the Valley News Dispatch. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.