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B-A defense key for fifth straight win

Good teams will always find a way to win. Last night the Bellwood-Antis Blue Devils did just that to shipwreck the Blue Pirates of Williamsburg in a game that was much closer than the final score indicated.
It may have been the first time so far this year that B-A gave up the height advantage, but they were able to adjust when they needed. After falling behind early by the score of 6-0, the Blue Devils came roaring right back on a three point shot by Ben Hatch and a tap in by Alan Wertz to take the lead 9-8 at the 4:23 mark of the first period.
Both teams then settled in to what was going to be the deciding factor in determining who was going to win this game. Tough defense. Lots of body contact and tough hand checking on both sides made it a seesaw battle throughout. Williamsburg had come out on top after the first eight minutes 14-11, due in part to being able to out rebound the Blue Devils twelve to three in the first quarter.
Bellwood-Antis’ hustle resulted in the Blue Devils marching to the foul line early to start shooting one on one fouls at the 7:40 mark of the second quarter. When Ben Hatch missed a three point shot he was fouled and went to the line for three foul shots. He canned two of the three shots to deadlock the game at 17-17 at the 6:10 mark of the period. Then Bellwood-Antis went on a five point run that put them up 22-7. The teams traded buckets the remainder of the period as Bellwood left the floor at half up by five 26-21.
“I told our kids at halftime that I really felt that the first four minutes of the second half would determine who would win this game,” said Bellwood\’s head coach Tim Keech. “We felt good that we were up by five at the half and in good position,” Keech added.
Tough defense continued throughout the third quarter with both teams trading buckets. Then came the shot of the night. With .1 seconds left on the clock in the third period, Blaze Winterstein left one go from three feet inside Bellwood\’s side of the court and it hit squarely in the box on the backboard and saw nothing but net from there for a big three point play. This put Bellwood-Antis up by nine at the end of three quarters of play at 41-32. The Blue Pirates never would recover from that shot.
The Blue Devils came out on fire defensively in the fourth quarter. The telling mark of the game was the ability of the Blue Devils to hold Williamsburg to one point for the first 6:58 seconds of the fourth quarter. In just a little over six minutes of play the Blue Devils had taken a nine point lead and turned it into eighteen point lead and this one was in the books. Bellwood-Antis ended the fourth quarter outscoring their hosts 20-9.
Alan Wertz again lead the Bellwood-Antis scoring attack with fourteen points. He also grabbed down a team high nine rebounds for the Blue Devils. Paul Christner added twelve and Blaze Winterstein hit for ten for Bellwood.
Mitch Yeager was team high for the Blue Pirates with twelve points and also pulled down a team high nine rebounds.
After the game Coach Keech said, “I was very proud of the way our kids played tonight. We made some adjustments at halftime and wanted to come out and turn it up in the second half. I thought we really ran them well in the second half. Our bench again is playing big and providing us with so much depth. We improved over our effort against Southern Huntingdon and we played better than we did against Mount Union. We need to be able to continue to improve each game.”
Bellwood shot a hot 51% from the floor and was 14-22 from the foul line. Despite giving up a height advantage the Blue Devils were able to win the battle of the boards by pulling down twenty-four rebounds to Williamsburg\’s twenty-three.
Game Notes: Bellwood improves to 5-0 on the season while Williamsburg drops to 5-3.
Williamsburg won the J.V. game 45-34. Bruno DeGol had a team high ten points for Bellwood-Antis. Bellwood\’s J.V. record is now even at 2-2 for the year.
Bellwood-Antis travels to Ebensburg on Tuesday night and will play Bishop Carroll at 6:30 PM in the County Seat Christmas Tournament.
Bellwood-Antis 61 Williamsburg 41
Bellwood-Antis: Christner 4 3-5 12, Winterstein 4 0-0 10, Hatch 2 2-4 7, Wertz 4 6-7 14, Elvey 2 0-0 5, B. DeGol 2 2-2 6, Miller 0 0-0 0, N. DeGol 0 0-2 0, Hughes 1 0-1 2, Jenkins 1 1-1 3, Gray 1 0-0 2. Totals: 21 14-22 61
Williamsburg: Deterline 1 0-0 2, Eastep 3 0-0 6, Harker 3 0-0 6, Greaser 2 2-4 6, Yeager 5 1-3 12, Miller 1 0-0 2, Dowey 1 0-0 2, Fay 0 2-2 2, Detwiler 1 1-2 3. Totals: 17 6-11 41
Three-point goals: Bellwood-Antis 5 (Christner, Winterstein 2, Hatch, Elvey)
Williamsburg 1 (Yeager)
Fouled out: Bellwood-Antis: Elvey