Price registers 23 points; defense crushes Cathedral
Four score in double figures for Mohigans
For The Dominion Post
Morgantown High opened its boys’ basketball season Saturday with a convincing win at home against Cathedral Prep (Erie, Pa.), 63-45.
The Mohigans were shaky in the first quarter, but rebounded and appeared to play in fine midseason form the rest of the way. Taylor Price led the Mohigans with 23 points and eight rebounds, with 11 of his points coming in the second quarter.
Morgantown’s defense was stifling all game, and held Cathedral’s leading scorer, Sheldon Zablotny, to nine points. Adam Blazek led Cathedral in scoring with 16 points.
While the Mohigans struggled offensively in the first quarter, their defense kept them three points behind Cathedral by the end, 12-9.
In the second quarter, Price took over for Morgantown offensively. He scored 11 on his own, compared to eight for Cathedral. The Mohigans took their first lead of 22-20, with a little more than two minutes left before halftime, on a bucket by Price, and led, 24-20, going into the break.
During the third quarter, the rest of the team started to warm up from the field. Both the inside and outside games were clicking for Morgantown, as Carlton Drake and Evan Berryhill hit shots from outside, while Nathan Adrian worked on the inside. Morgantown opened a 12-point lead by the end of the quarter.
Frustration set in for Cathedral in the fourth quarter, as one player drew a technical foul after a foul had already been called on another Cathedral player. Berryhill went to the line to shoot three free throws, made all three, and Morgantown also had possession. Adrian hit a 3 to cap off a six-point play, in effect.
By this point, Morgantown had the game well in hand, and cruised to victory.
Morgantown appeared dominant in nearly all facets of the game, which bodes well for the rest of the season. Coach Tom Yester said he was especially pleased with the team’s performance on the defensive end.
“I’m tickled we only gave up the number of points that we did. We did a pretty good job on defense,” he said.
Price agreed with his coach. “The best thing about our play was our defense. We got in their passing lanes. When we started playing good defense, we got lots of layups and easy buckets in transition.”
Yester also approved of the team scoring distribution. Price dominated scoring in the second quarter, but the team ended with four players in double figures for points, including Berryhill, Drake and Adrian.
“We did a good job of finding the open guy and making the extra pass. We got the ball inside well, too,” Yester said.
“It took time for us to start,” Price said about the team’s slow start. “We had to find our identity. Once we got into our rhythm, we did well.”
The Mohigans also exceled from the free-throw line, going a near-perfect 18-for-21. Cathedral managed just nine foul shots total and made six.
Yester was critical of the team’s offensive rebounding. The Mohigans picked up eight, but Yester said, “We should always be at least in double figures on offensive rebounds.”
Aside from that, Yester said he was happy with Morgantown’s low number of turnovers, good scoring distribution and, most importantly, its stifling defense.
If the Mohigans’ performance Saturday was any indication, the team should be well prepared once it hits the meat of its schedule.
Price said about the team’s priorities this year, “Our defense starts everything for us.”
Zablotny 3 3-4 9, DiRaimo 3 0-0 7, Sisinni 2 0-0 4, A. Blazek 6 1-1 16, Tate 0 0-0 0, Sansone 3 2-4 9, Lynch 0 0-0 0, D. Blazek 0 0-0 0, Griacinski 0 0-0 0, Knoll 0 0-0 0. Totals 17 6-9 45.
Berryhill 2 5-5 10, Lusk 0 0-0 0, Colasante 0 0-0 0, Watson 0 0-0 0, Keffer 0 0-0 0, Marshall 1 0-0 2, Drake 4 1-2 10, Adrian 4 0-0 10, Fulmer 0 0-0 0, Blemings 1 2-2 4, Price 8 6-8 23. Totals 20 18-21 63.
C Ca atth he ed drra all 1122 88 1111 1144 — — 4455 M Mo orrg ga an ntto ow wn n 99 1155 1199 2200 — — 6633
33--p po oiin nttg go oa allss:: Morgantown 5 (Adrian 2, Price, Drake, Berryhill), Cathedral 5 (A. Blazek 3, DiRaimo, Sansone).

Jason DeProspero/ The Dominion Post
Morgantown High’s Alex Watson (21) drives the basket against Cathedral Prep’s Nico Sisinni.