Morgan boys ousted by New Philly
BYESVILLE — Morgan could simply not afford to get off to a bad start if they were to have any chance at upsetting top-seeded New Philadelphia in Thursday evening’s Division II district final at Meadowbrook High School.
Unfortunately the 11th seeded Raiders could not buy a bucket early on as they allowed the Quakers to score the first eight points of the game en route to a 59-35 win.
Nate Voll led three Quaker scorers in double-figures as New Philadelphia advances to Saturday’s District Championship game at Indian Valley High School against East Liverpool.
“A team like this (New Philadelphia) is very aggressive and if you don’t come out and match their intensity and handle their aggression right out of the gate it goes a little side ways on you,” said first-year Morgan head coach Rob Justice. “Our boys were busy trying to figure out how to deal with the pressure and the last thing they are trying to figure out is how to put the ball in the bucket.”
Morgan finally got on the board with three minutes to play in the first and trimmed New Philly’s lead to 12-6 after a pair of late field goals by senior Tyler Janes.
The Quakers quickly regained the momentum that they lost late in the first quarter when they scored the first 12 points of the second period to open up a 24-6 lead.
Janes snapped the new Philadelphia run with a basket and single handidly kept his team in the ball game as he scored all nine Morgan points in the second quarter as the Raiders trailed 32-15 at the break.
“Tyler is the type of kid that throughout the year when we were struggling has become the aggressor,” said Justice of his 6-foot-5 senior. “He really came through tonight to keep it semi respectful.”
New Philly went into a deliberate offense in the third quarter as they spent the majority of the eight minutes taking time off the clock while still managing to out-point the Raiders 8-7 to take a commanding 38-22 lead into the final quarter.
The Quakers put things away for good by opening the final period with a 10-2 run to allow head coach Matt Voll to empty his bench midway through the final quarter.
In addition to Noll’s 16 points, Caden Richmond and Brock Chumney each reached double figures with 11 and 10 points respectively for the Quakers (20-4) who shot 53.7 percent from the floor.
Janes led all scorers with 22 points while fellow senior Chance Myers added nine points and a team-high seven rebounds for Morgan.
The game was the final one at Morgan for Raider seniors Janes, Myers and Vaden Norris.
“These seniors have really done a lot this year,” said Justice, whose Raiders end their season with a 13-11 record. “We are certainly going to miss the effort that each one of those kids gave us.”