Bears rumble past Gators
On Tuesday night, the Geibel boys basketball team learned a tough lesson.
"Speed kills," Geibel coach Ken Misiak said after he watched the visiting Clairton Bears fly up and down the court on their way to a comfortable 76-57 victory over the Gators in non-section action. "They were quick and we played like we were in quicksand."
Geibel (1-2) hung right with Clairton (3-0) through the first four minutes as the teams exchanged the lead before the Gators' Dale Speggen hit a pair of foul shots to tie it at 9-9.
But from there, it was all Clairton.
The Bears used their speed to create fast-break opportunities as they built a 16-9 lead. Larry Ferguson was all over the place as he poured in 19 points in the first quarter to help the Bears take a 32-13 lead after one. Ferguson finished with 27 points.
"Ferguson was a big help," Clairton coach Corey Gadson said as he noted Ferguson's fast start. "It was a real blow to them."
Ferguson wasn't Geibel's only problem.
The Gators also had to try to deal with Trey Walker, and they didn't deal with him very well.
Walker started with six in the first, then tacked on 10 more in the second before finishing with a game-high 33.
"Walker has to do that for us," Gadson said. "He has to score for us on the inside."
Walker did do most of his damage inside as he was often left open when Geibel went to a pressure defense out high.
"Clairton is well-taught, and they knew what to do against the trap," Misiak said.
Geibel trailed at the half 46-31, but managed to slice the lead to 11 early in the third as Zack Leonard and Rob Ramsey each hit a couple of shots. Ramsey finished with 11 while Leonard tallied 10. But every time Geibel tried to get back in the game, Clairton would pull away once more.
"We had them down to 11, but then they went and scored two quick baskets," Misiak said. "We had a total collapse in every department. We couldn't match up with them. We're not as bad as we looked, but we have to pick it up."
One bright spot for Geibel was the play of Kellen Holmes. The freshmen led the Gators with 13 points.
"He played hard and aggressive," Misiak said.
Despite the fact that the Gators had three players reach double figures in scoring, it was clear that Clairton was in control of this game as Geibel struggled on defense as well as their outside shooting and passing.
"It was a very disappointing night," Misiak said.
Geibel will try to rebound on Thursday at Washington.
Geibel did manage to pick up a 57-46 win in junior varsity action. Jeremiah Voithofer led Geibel with 20 while Justin Karioki paced Clairton with 14.