MHS 88, EFHS 37

Runner gives MHS the edge over East Fairmont

BY JOEL DANOY The Dominion Post

Like a cool ocean breeze, the Morgantown High boys’ basketball team blew past East Fairmont 88-37 on what was “Jersey Shore” theme night for students.
Donning hair gel, aviator shades and popped collars, the students cheered their Mohigans on to victory to the beat of blasting techno music courtesy of a boom box brought by a student.
“They were great tonight. Both games this year they’ve showed up in force,” head coach Tom Yester said.
It was a different story for the Mohigans (1-1) in their second game of the season after losing to Preston last week, 57-39, following a 25-percent shooting effort from the field.
“Well, tonight we did a lot better. Hopefully they learned their lesson,” Yester said. “If you don’t shoot well and don’t play hard on defense, you won’t do too well.”
Sam Runner led Morgantown with 15 points and six rebounds with four assists and three blocks. Luke Meador had a solid effort off the bench with 12 points while Ryan Parsons tallied 10.
The Mohigans shot 47 percent and only seven turnovers with two coming in the first half.
“Those guys proved they could shoot tonight. I knew they had it in them but tonight it was a matter of relaxing and shooting the open shots at the right time and I thought we did that,” Yester said. “We did a lot of good stuff, if you have less than 10 turnovers and score 88 points, you scored them because you got shots and took care of the ball.”
East Fairmont (0-3) put in the effort but were undersized and outmatched. It was extremely difficult for the Bees to get anything working against the Mohigans at either end of the court. The Bees simply looked like a team still working out the fundamentals in their game.
The Mohigans took advantage of their size and strength inside the paint, working the ball down low or passing it out for the open shot on the wing. Morgantown’s offense benefited from their defensive rebounding and their guards’ ability to push the ball down court quickly.
“Neither point guard had a turnover. To put it in a nutshell, everybody did something good tonight,” Yester said. “We did a good job on defense but we have a long way to go.”
For Runner, he held true to his name, getting up and down the court with ease. Listed at 6-foot-7, the big man made plays well at both ends. Twice Runner blocked a shot then went coast-to-coast scoring on a layup.
“I knew I would have some opportunities if I ran the floor well,” Runner said. “I like to be able to dribble. Being inside, I don’t get to do it that much. It’s nice to do it sometimes.”
Runner set the tone for each half getting opening dunks in the first and third quarters.
“People have been telling me I need to get one, I need to get one. I wasn’t planning on it, but when I went for the layups, I decided to pull the rim down with it,” Runner said.
But Yester said that although a win is a win, the team can’t get ahead of itself.
“Let’s keep things in perspective; it was a good win against an undermanned team. It won’t be like this every game but we need to play like this every week to give ourselves a chance. Next is Wheeling Park and it’s not getting any easier,” he said.
The Mohigans travel to Wheeling Park on Jan. 2 for a 7:30 p.m. game.
In JV action, Morgantown defeated East Fairmont 78-46. Ben Blemings scored 18 points while Connor Loudin added 13 and Nathan Adrian had 12.
Berryhill 0 2-2 2, Parsons 4 1-2 10, Runner 7 1-1 15, Colombo 4 0-0 8, Lusk 0 0-0 0, Meador 5 0-0 12, Barnett 1 0-0 2, Adrian 2 0-0 5, Drake 2 0-0 4, Glover 4 0-0 9, Keffer 3 0-0 6, Blemings 4 1-2 9, Price 2 2-4 6. Totals 38 7-11 88.
Bartholow 0 1-2 1, Deymon 0 0-0 0, Caslinuova 0 0-0 0, Nuzum 3 2-2 8, Perrella 1 0-0 2, McCutchan 2 2-7 7, Conaway 0 0-0 0, Lorich 1 0-0 3, Devito 0 0-0 0, Shuck 1 1-2 4, Corwin 0 0-0 0, Bower 5 2-8 12. Totals 13 8-23 37.
MHS 25 24 18 21 88
EFHS 8 6 17 6 37
3-point goals: Morgantown 5 (Meador 2, Adrian, Glover, Parsons). East Fairmont 3 (McCutchan, Lorich, Shuck).

Bob Gay/ The Dominion Post
MHS’s Sam Runner (center) grabs a rebound from East Fairmont’s Jacob Bower (left) and Brandon Shuck.