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 BY JEFF FALK

 FREDERICKSBURG – There’s an old basketball adage that suggests one should ‘shoot first and ask questions later’. There’s also an old adage, that could apply to basketball, that goes something like, ‘When you’re hot, you’re hot. And when you’re not, you’re not.’

 There’s also a new basketball adage that was coined just last evening, ‘Open looks are good looks’.

  On Thursday night, during the opening round of the annual Northern Lebanon Christmas Tournament, the host Viking shot the basketball at a torrid rate during an impressive 71-53 manhandling of Tulpehocken. Thanks to a 24-point first-quarter barrage and a 42-point first half, Northern Lebanon posted a season-high for points in a game.

 Not only did the result even Northern Lebanon’s overall mark to 4-4, it pushed the Vikings into Friday night’s 7:30 p.m. championship game of the event, opposite undefeated Littlestown. 

 “We’re not trying to be Elco, firing all these ‘threes’,” said Northern Lebanon head coach Chris George. “But we do have shooters. We have some guys who are new to the varsity scene and they’re trying to prove themselves. I think the biggest thing was they were wide-open looks. Usually these days, four out of the five kids on the court can knock that ‘three’ down.

 “We easily shot over 70 percent,” continued George. “When we weren’t getting ‘threes’, we were getting wide-open lay-ups. I think we’re capable of that. To be 4-4 and having a couple of those losses being close. these younger guys are ahead of schedule. But we haven’t gotten into the meat of our season yet.”

 The Vikings came out of the gates absolutely on fire.

  Courtesy of eight from senior Josh Bowers, seven  from Ethan Borcky and an inside deuce by senior Eyan Margut, Northern Lebanon scored a whopping 17 points in the game’s first four minutes of action, while opening an 11-point lead. Then thanks to baskets from freshman Peyton Wolfe, Josh Clemmer and Bowers, the Vikings netted the final seven points of the opening frame, to establish a 24-12 lead.

 “Teams try to get after us because we’re a younger team and a smaller team,” said George. “But our younger guards are getting better and better. When we get good looks, we can knock them down. We were playing very much under control and getting our shot.

 “We’re very unselfish,” continued George. “When you are, it feeds down to the rest of the group. Our sum is better than our parts right now. They’re (his players) super tight. The chemistry is great. They want to see each other succeed.”

 Northern Lebanon scored every one of its 18 second-period points from beyond the arc. Wolfe, Borcky and Owen Treadway each drained a couple of three-pointers, as the Vikings extended their cushion to 42-22 by the intermission.

 “We haven’t tried to focus too much on wins and losses,” said George. “Losing a lot of guys (nine seniors), we didn’t focus too much on that. We’ve just tried to get better, and quite accidentally, the wins have followed. We’re not expected to do things. We just want to get better.

 “We’re here to play better basketball,” George continued. “We’re not looking at standings and what other teams are doing. Our team is focused on the game that night. We never look ahead. Right now we’re playing that underdog role and our kids are embracing it.”

 For the night, Northern Lebanon made a total of ten three-point baskets and outscored the Trojans 30-18 from distance. The Vikings also made all five of their free-throw attempts.

 Borcky collected a team-high 19 points, while Wolfe contributed 14 points and Bowers recorded 13.

 “He (Wolfe) shot really well, but at the end of the day, I think our team takes on the character of our seniors,” said George, who counts three sophomores and a freshman in his top rotation. “They’re gritty. Bowers and Margut set the tone for the whole team. They do all the dirty work.

 “They’ve started scoring a little more than last year,” added George. “But they’re still glue guys. Unnoticed things like setting screens and diving for loose balls, when you have two seniors doing that, it’s easy for the rest of the team to follow.”

 The closest Tulpehocken could come in the second half was 51-39 late in the third quarter. But six unanswered Viking points – four from Tyler Hess and a bucket by Borcky – in the middle of the fourth period jacked the Northern Lebanon lead back to 69-49.

 “I would’ve liked to be more patient at times,” said George. “But give Tulpy credit, they battled. At a time in the third quarter and into the fourth, I thought we got a little too patient. But when we put our foot back on the gas, I think we got it (the lead) back up to 20 or 22. Tonight, certain kids were hot.

 “We haven’t done it (won their own Christmas tournament) yet, in my four years here,” concluded George. “We’re hoping we can battle with Littlestown tomorrow night. Winning would be the icing on top. It’s going to be a challenge. If we’re able to hang around, we have shown we’re gritty and we can do all the little things.”

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 To purchase images in this article email jkfalk2005@yahoo.com, or to view more go to https://lebanonsportsbuzz.com/photo-gallery/.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 2018-19 Northern Lebanon Boys’ Basketball Schedule

 
 
Date Opponents Outcomes  
12/07
6:30 pm
Northern Lebanon
Camp Hill
at Bermudian Springs
35
49
 
12/08
6:30 pm
Northern Lebanon
at Bermudian Springs
31
28
 
12/11
7:30 pm
Williams Valley
at Northern Lebanon
52
57
 
12/14
7:30 pm
Northern Lebanon
at Lampeter-Strasburg
36
52
 
12/17
7:30 pm
Cocalico
at Northern Lebanon
46
48
 
12/19
7:30 pm
Northern Lebanon
at Garden Spot
23
51
 
12/21
7:30 pm
Solanco
at Northern Lebanon
37
36
 
12/27
7:30 pm
Tulpehocken
at Northern Lebanon
   
1/04
7:30 pm
Lancaster Catholic
at Northern Lebanon
   
1/07
7:30 pm
Pine Grove
at Northern Lebanon
   
1/11
7:30 pm
Northern Lebanon
at Elco
   
1/15
7:30 pm
Northern Lebanon
at Octorara
   
1/18
7:30 pm
Donegal
at Northern Lebanon
   
1/19
2:30 pm
Northern Lebanon
at Conrad Weiser
   
1/22
7:30 pm
Northern Lebanon
at Lancaster Catholic
   
1/24
7:30 pm
Northern Lebanon
at Manheim Central
   
1/29
7:30 pm
Elco
at Northern Lebanon
   
2/01
7:30 pm
Octorara
at Northern Lebanon
   
2/02
7:00 pm
Northern Lebanon
at Palmyra
   
2/05
7:30 pm
Northern Lebanon
at Donegal
   
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 2018-19 Northern Lebanon Boys’ Basketball Roster
 
 
No. Name Year    
  Alex Bechtold      
  Ethan Borcky Jr.    
  Josh Bowers Sr.    
  Josh Clemmer      
  Alex Folmer Jr.    
  Ian Herman      
  Tyler Hess Jr.    
  Nate Leedy Reidel Jr.    
  Eyan Margut Sr.    
         
  Nate Shirk      
  Owen Treadway      
  Peyton Wolfe      
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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