December 29, 2010
SC fails to capitalize
Morgantown tops Black Eagles despite 30 turnovers
By Doug Smock

Lawrence Pierce
South Charleston's Tyler Harris has his shot blocked by Morgantown's Michael Keffer. Morgantown committed a turnover every which way Tuesday at South Charleston Community Center.
There were offensive fouls, errant passes and any number of steals by the homestanding South Charleston Black Eagles. All told, the Mohigans coughed up the ball 30 times.
And won. Wire-to-wire even, leading by 20 in the third quarter and holding on to win 66-58.
Neither Morgantown coach Tom Yester nor SC coach Vic Herbert had never seen anything quite like it, and they've seen years and years of basketball.
"You try to [simulate SC's defense] in practice - no way!" Yester said. "And we know that."
"You turn somebody over 30 times and you can't win, that's pretty bad," Herbert said. "I've never had a team that's caused 30 turnovers and not won the game - in big-time fashion."
Michael Keffer scored 17 points to lead Morgantown, including two big baskets in the final two minutes. The first was a 3-point dagger off an inbounds pass with just under two minutes left, and a basket off a near-steal by SC with a minute left.
Both times, the Black Eagles (3-2) had that former 20-point deficit melted to five with all that pressure. But Morgantown (3-1) used its height to rule the boards and hold the Black Eagles to 31 percent shooting. The Eagles had 24 more shots, but the Mohigans compensated by shooting 52 percent.
The first quarter, a 19-turnover affront to the basketball senses, probably encapsulated the entire game. Morgantown had 11 turnovers but still led 11-8, thanks for SC's failure to capitalize.
The Eagles needed all the points off turnovers they could get, because they couldn't (or wouldn't) penetrate until they were desperate. They launched 32 3-point shots, hitting just eight and giving their coach fits.
"Right now, we're not very good," Herbert said. "To be perfectly honest, we're a bunch of individual players who haven't figured out that we need to be a team to win. Too much one-on-one, too much 'look how great I am' type of stuff, that's ridiculous, and we've got to get that fixed."
The Mohigans scored nine straight points in the second quarter to lead 24-12, and bumped that to 32-18 at the half. They opened the second half with an 8-2 run to take that 40-20 lead.
The Eagles then turned up the pressure, racking up four straight steals at one point. Pierria' Henry's two straight 3-pointers cut the lead to single digits, but the Eagles didn't mount their most serious threat until Tyler Harris' two foul shots made it 52-47 with 3:31 left.
But the Eagles never got closer. Two missed free throws didn't help, as Morgantown hit seven of its last eight. And then there was that Keffer 3-pointer, which was wide, wide open.
"Just miscommunication on who we were supposed to [guard]," Herbert said. "It was pretty bad."
With Marshall assistant coach Mark Cline watching, Henry led the Eagles with 20 points, followed by Harris with 17. For the Mohigans, long-armed Nathan Adrian had 12 points, making up for the foul trouble of 6-foot-5, 230-pound Taylor Price. Evan Berryhill had 10 points, including three free throws in the final 1:20.