LAGRANGE — It certainly wasn’t a thing of beauty or finesse at Keystone on Tuesday night, but the Wildcats were able to pick up their fourth victory of the year in six games, 59-41, over Black River.
Keystone, now 3-1 in league play, stayed in the thick of the Stars Divison chase in the Patriot Athletic Conference, sending the Pirates (2-5 overall) to their third conference loss in four games.
“It’s kind of our philosophy,” said Keystone coach Greg Morgan when asked about his team’s ugly win. “We want to get the game under pressure a little bit in the half court. They wanted to pressure us. We got out to a 50-32 lead without making many layups or many free throws.”
“We started fouling,” said senior Corey Dill, who came off the bench to score 11 points and grab eight rebounds to tie Matt Herb for top honors in both categories for Keystone. “Coach Morgan didn’t like that too much. He called a time out and we got it back on track.”
Black River trailed by 18 points with just 3:47 left to play but somehow scratched its way to within 50-41 with nearly two minutes left before Keystone closed out the game with the final nine points — seven coming from the free throw line.
“We play ugly basketball,” agreed Pirate coach Bryan Morgan, no relation to Keystone’s coach. “We’re going to have to scrap to win games this year. We can get into it but we’re just not experienced enough to take the lead over.”
Poor shooting was Black River’s demise. After starting the game hitting six of their first 11 attempts, the Pirates didn’t score for the first five minutes of the second quarter. After the opening quarter, Black River managed only nine more field goals the rest of the way, while taking 33 shots.
Miguel Quintela led the Pirates with 12 points and nine rebounds before fouling out late in the game. David Gentry added 10 points.
“We had a down time as far as closing the game out,” said Keystone’s Morgan. “We got it back and made enough free throws and enough layups.”
Dill, whose uncle and father — twins Clay and Jay — were local legends of the ’Cats better than 30 years ago, gave Keystone a huge lift off the bench. The Wildcats had five players contribute at least nine points and three chased down a minimum of seven rebounds. Kyle Smith joined Herb and Dill in double figures with 10 points, while Kyle Shaw scored nine and tracked down seven missed shots. Sophomore Jimmy Reid finished with nine points as well.
“Corey’s been really playing well the last couple games,” said the Wildcat coach. “We really look for him — starting or off the bench — whatever. We could have had five guys with 12 to 15 points if we’d make our shots.”
Contact Tim Gebhardt at 329-7135 or email@example.com.
Keystone 59, Black River 41
BLACK RIVER (41): David Gentry 4-0-10, Miguel Quintela 3-6-12, Travis Kimble 2-0-4, David Metzger 2-0-4, Jon Sas 2-1-5, Curtis Klosski 1-0-2, Anthony O’Connor 0-0-0, Brandon Freeman 0-0-0, Chase Smith 1-2-4. Totals 15-9-41.
KEYSTONE (59): Jimmy Reid 3-3-9, Kyle Shaw 4-1-9, Kyle Smith 3-2-10, Matt Herb 4-3-11, Mike Herb 0-0-0, Corey Smith 1-0-3, Matt Osborne 1-0-2, Corey Dill 3-5-11, Jeff Knepper 0-0-0, Nick Wilmoth 1-2-4. Totals 20-16-59.
Black River 13 9 5 14 — 41
Keystone 12 17 10 20 — 59
Three-point goals: Black River 2-12 (Gentry 2). Keystone 3-9 (K. Smith 2, C. Smith). Field Goals: Black River 15-44 (36 percent). Keystone 20-48 (42 percent). Free Throws: Black River 9-12 (75 percent). Keystone 16-26 (61 percent). Rebounds: Black River 31 (Quintela 9), Keystone 36 (Dill, Matt Herb 8). Turnovers: Black River 19, Keystone 16. Fouls: Black River 21, Keystone 16. Fouled Out: Quintela.
Junior Varsity: Keystone 70-32.