Mt. Pleasant boys hope to get up and down the court this season
By Dave Stofcheck
Published: Monday, Dec. 9, 2013, 12:21 a.m.
Tony Splendore's coaching strategy for the Mt. Pleasant boys basketball team this season can be broken down quite simply.
Run some more.
Splendore believes moving the ball up and down the court will be the team's strong suit this season.
“We want to change the tempo of our game,” Splendore said. “It all starts with rebounding. We have nice overall size and we want to use it to control the boards.
“We want to play solid defense and then look to push the ball up the court and come up with some easy baskets.”
Splendore has five players back who saw significant playing time last season, including returning starters Ryan Gumbita, Luke Liprando and Marcus Malara.
All three are seniors and will play vital roles in Mt. Pleasant's offense.
The 6-foot-4 Gumbita recently was moved to point guard.
“He can see over top of the defenses,” Splendore said. “Ryan's strong with the basketball, protects it well and is a good outside shooter. He has a lot of weapons.
“Being a quarterback on the football team, he always had the ball in his hands, and we're happy with the results of the switch.”
Liprando is a 6-1 forward, but according to Splendore, he plays much bigger.
“He's a strong inside player,” Splendore said. “He's deceiving. He plays like he's 6-4 or 6-5.”
At 6-3, Malara is another strong force inside and will line up at center.
“He's a different kind of player around the basket,” Splendore said. “He has very nice inside moves, and he's very good up and under the basket. Marcus is very strong on the weak side also.”
Seniors Dante Porter (6-1, forward) and Mitch Matlas (6-1, guard) will complete the starting five.
Senior Nick Antonishen, juniors Matt Johnson, Zac D'Amico and Luke Luckert are expected to see plenty of playing time, as well.
Mt. Pleasant will compete in Section 3-AAA, along with Derry, Greensburg Salem, Laurel Highlands, Southmoreland, Uniontown and Yough.
“The section is pretty wide open in my opinion,” Splendore said. “Last year, we made the playoffs and went 13-9 after we won three games the previous season.
“That's something we can build on. But in this section, we can't take anyone for granted.”
Mt. Pleasant plays at Highlands in an exhibition game Monday.
Dave Stofcheck is a freelance writer for Trib Total Media.
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.
- Roundball roundup: Hooker leads Quad-A stars to win
- Alle-Kiski Roundball Classic notebook: Luther twins playing last games together