Huntley gets in a rhythm, beats Boylan
Huntley believes that with swift, precise passing the ball will find the right shooter, whoever that is on any particular play.
"Whoever gets the shot, it's the right shot, at the end of the day," said Red Raiders guard Ethan Blackmore of his team's offensive philosophy.
That strategy was most evident late in the second quarter and early in the third as Huntley pulled away from Boylan in a 62-48 nonconference boys basketball victory Saturday afternoon.
The Raiders (17-5) hit five 3-pointers for the game - three fewer than their game average - but made four of them in that key stretch.
Boylan (17-6) cut the lead to 22-19 with 3:10 remaining in the first half, but Mark Roesner and Blackmore each hit a 3 and Huntley finished the half with a 30-22 lead. The Raiders opened the second half with an 8-0 run, with 3s from Blackmore and Lucas Crosby.
"Our coach (Will Benson) talks about the guy who's supposed to take the shot will get the shot," Huntley forward Ty Goodrich said of the Raiders' ball movement.
Goodrich tossed in a team-high 17 points and hit 7 of 7 free throws; Crosby scored 15, while Blackmore and Omare Segarra each added eight. The Raiders hit 50% (20 of 40) from the field and 85% (17 of 20) at the free-throw line.
"We just shared the ball and got into a rhythm," Benson said of the key 16-3 run. "We talk about stacking together good possessions and we had a ton of good possessions defensively in a row and offensively in a row. And we made some shots."
Huntley trailed only once, at 8-7. The Raiders kept the lead in double digits the entire second half.
"Our guys looked tired for whatever reason. We just didn't have jump in our step," Titans coach Brett McAllister said. "We certainly felt that at the beginning of the game and the end of the first half. We addressed it at halftime."
The Titans did force 17 turnovers, some off their full-court, man-to-man pressure.
"When we turned it up and played with more energy and fight, we were able to resist more and turn them over and make them make some more difficult decisions," McAllister said. "When we sat back in half-court defensively, they just picked us apart with their offense. That's a credit to them."
Benson was not upset at the turnovers against Boylan's pressure.
"We kept getting stops, so it wasn't burning us. It was a turnover and guard them," he said. "That's our second game in a row defensively where we were disciplined and sound. We played a lot last week. That was important."
Goodrich thought the Raiders maintained their poise well.
"Even though they were playing fast, we slowed it down on offense to play how we want to play, not how they want to play," Goodrich said. "We got fouled a lot and knocked down our free throws.
"I just got a lot of inside looks because of my teammates' great passes, from Ethan and I was able to finish them."
Aiden Campos led the Titans with 20 points, while Mark Harris added 11.