Sports in The Dominion Post

This article appeared in the Dominion Post Newspaper on January 29, 2004.
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Mohigans boys get a battle from B-U

MHS a target for every foe, Yester warns


The Dominion Post

The Morgantown High boys' basketball team hit the halfway point of its regular season Wednesday night with a 63-50 victory against Buckhannon-Upshur.

Yet, while the record says 11-0 and the state ranking says No. 2, MHS coach Tom Yester hopes his team plays better in the second half than it did in the first.

"We haven't found our rhythm yet," Yester said. "We have it in spurts. For two or three minutes we play well."

Unlike the previous two teams Yester guided to the state's Final Four, this 2003-04 team is expected to get that far.

You wouldn't have known that Wednesday, against the Buccaneers (3-8).

"We passed the ball when we should have shot it and we shot it when we should have passed it," Yester said. "The defense played well and held them to 50 points. The defense has been consistent for us so far, but we didn't pass the ball worth a darn tonight."

The signs of a defensive struggle came early; the score was 10-10 after a quarter. Even as MHS began to increase its lead, the Bucs continued to hang around and trailed by just seven points midway through the fourth quarter.

The Mohigans' free-throw shooting (16-of-21 in the second half) sealed the outcome.

What exactly does Yester see as the difference between this team and the teams from the previous two seasons?

"This game was a result of the targets being on our backs," Yester said. "Teams are going up against us now with nothing to lose and that's the attitude they play with. What do they have to lose? Nothing.

"Our team has learned a little on how to play with the targets on their backs, but they have a long way to go."

The past two seasons, the Mohigans had been the team to sneak up on everyone. Not this year.

"Our guys have to understand there are no easy games," Yester said. "We're going to get the best from every team we play, no matter what their record is. We can't just go out there and play. Our guys need to learn that very quickly."

Kameron Law led the way with 14 points and Tyler Benson is beginning to show signs of breaking out of a shooting slump. Benson hit two 3-pointers and finished with 12 points, while Chris Carey scored 11.

"We need more from those three guys, though," Yester said. "Early in the game, Kameron was hot, but then we forgot he was hot and they didn't get the ball to him enough.

"Everything with Tyler is above his shoulders. He just needs to learn to relax. His shot will come back to him."

The Mohigans got 16 points off the bench, 13 coming from John Oliver and Marlin Robinson. Chances are, you'll be seeing more of those names as the season goes on.

"John just continues to give me reasons to put him in the game," Yester said. "He plays hard and plays good defense. Marlin had a good game tonight. I think both of them will get a few more minutes each game. I thought our depth made a difference tonight."

Morgantown 63

Buck.-Upshur 50


Godwin 0 0-0 0, Coughlin 7 1-2 22, Hyre 1 2-2 5, Baxa 1 1-2 3, Gifford 2 1-4 5, Thomas 2 2-2 6, Weese 0 5-6 5, Dobberstein 1 2-4 4. Totals 14 14-22 50.


Benson 4 2-3 12, Law 4 6-6 14, Jones 0 0-0 0, Torsney 3 2-2 8, Oliver 3 0-0 8, Kerns 1 0-0 2, Hall 1 1-1 3, Carey 1 9-12 11, Robinson 2 1-2 5. Totals 19 21-26 63.

Buckhannon-Upshur 10 9 13 18 -- 50

Morgantown 10 18 16 19 -- 63

3-point goals--Morgantown 4 (Oliver 2, Benson 2), Buckhannon-Upshur 8 (Coughlin 7, Hyre 1). Rebounds--Morgantown 29 (Torsney 7), Buckhannon-Upshur 36 (Dobberstein 10). JV--Morgantown (9-0) 78, B-U 31 (MHS--John Hatfield 15, Jeff Lindsay 14, Jared Ramsey 11).

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