ELYRIA - Elyria High`s opener Friday resembled something more suited for one of the many playgrounds around town than it did an organized, officiated high school game.
Neither team played particularly well in a loosely officiated, physical game that the Pioneers lost in racehorse fashion to Twinsburg,
63-52. The Tigers are now 2-0, having beaten Revere to open the season a week ago.
Elyria didn`t shoot the ball well (22-of-74) and allowed a lot of layups and tip-ins on the defensive end. It was a game the Pioneers could have won - maybe even should have won - had they not played so helter-skelter for most of the night.
"Big time," answered Twinsburg coach Bob Pacsi when asked about the physical nature of the game. "That`s how (the Pioneers) play. They took us out of our motion offense. We don`t play a deliberate style but we certainly don`t play like that. That`s how (Elyria) plays and that`s how they win games."
"We played too fast," said Pioneers coach Bob Walsh. "We missed easy shots. We defended poorly. How many rebound baskets did (Twinsburg) have? At least 10, right? Get that message across to them in the paper."
Twinsburg outrebounded Elyria 50-42, but the margin seemed wider and the Tigers did indeed dominate their own glass, scoring all of their points from close range.
"There`s nothing positive over here at all," Walsh continued as he looked over Elyria`s side of the scorebook. "They want me to say positive things but do you see anything positive?"
When Elyria High`s Seryrell Davis left the game to get a cut on his wrist stitched up, the Pioneers chances of winning went with him. Davis, at 6-foot-4, is Elyria`s only starter taller than 6-0. With 4:16 left in the third quarter, he suffered a nasty slice on his wrist battling for a rebound and was taken to the hospital to get it attended to. His 11 points and eight rebounds went with him.
Twinsburg, with all five starters over 6-0, held a precarious 37-36 lead at that point. But Elyria didn`t score for more than three minutes as the Tigers built a 47-36 cushion.
Granted, Elyria rallied to within 54-52 with 2:32 left behind a late barrage from Demetrius Dalton, but when senior starters Alex McKenna and Promis Cabbil fouled out moments later it led to Twinsburg putting the game on ice with the final nine points of the night.
In fact, Elyria had a couple of scoring lapses that hurt its chances. After taking a 20-12 lead thanks to five unanswered points by Davis to start the second quarter, Twinsburg scored the next 14 for a 26-20 lead.
Aaron Trail (20 points), Keith Curry (19) and Fred Land (15) took turns driving and pushing the ball on the offensive end for Twinsburg. The Tigers got to the foul line 27 times, but until they made their final six to seal the outcome, they had scored just seven points on free throws. Meanwhile, Elyria was 5-of-11.
"I thought this was a little far-fetched," Walsh said when asked about the lack of structured offense that led to the 23-13 foul discrepancy. "It got us in foul trouble. Did (Twinsburg) have anybody in foul trouble?"
Elyria`s lack of patience on the offensive end led to 17 turnovers and just under 30 percent shooting from the field.
"Offensively, (we) played faster than (we) could play," Walsh said. "(We) played too quick. (We`re) avoiding (getting) fouled and the other team is getting fouled. They (Pioneers) make spin moves to the basket, then they wonder why the official doesn`t call (a foul) `cause he can`t see it. Just take the shot, get fouled and go to the line."
Elyria is at Normandy on Tuesday.
Contact Tim Gebhardt at 329-7135 or email@example.com.
TWINSBURG (63): Aaron Trial 7-6-20, Kevin Foley 2-0-4, Dominque Sanders 1-0-2, Fred Land 6-3-15, Kevin Miller 0-0-0, Douglas Holmes 0-0-0, Steven Eiland 1-1-3, Keith Curry 8-3-19, Andre Payten 0-0-0. Totals 25-13-63.
ELYRIA (52): Promis Cabbil 2-4-8, Demetrius Dalton 6-0-15, Rayshawn Camel 4-0-8, Seryrell Davis 5-1-11, Alex McKenna 0-0-0, Kare King 0-0-0, Travis Noble 3-0-6, Ricky Smallwood 0-0-0, Mykel Williams 2-0-4. Totals 22-5-52.
Twinsburg Â Â Â 12Â Â Â 17Â Â Â 18Â Â Â 16Â Â Â - Â Â Â 63
ElyriaÂ Â Â 15Â Â Â 11Â Â Â 12Â Â Â 14Â Â Â - Â Â Â 52
Three-point goals: Twinsburg 0-3. Elyria 3-16 (Dalton 3). Field Goals: Twinsburg 25-60 (42 percent). Elyria 22-74 (30 percent). Free Throws: Twinsburg 13-27 (48 percent). Elyria 5-11 (45 percent). Rebounds: Twinsburg 50 (Land 16), Elyria 42 (Davis 8). Turnovers: Twinsburg 21, Elyria 17. Fouls: Twinsburg 13, Elyria 23. Fouled Out: McKenna, Cabbil.
Junior Varsity: Twinsburg 65-43.