Thursday, December 5, 2013
For the Bishop England Battling Bishops, it wasn’t how they started, but how they finished Wednesday.
Bishop England (2-2) saved some of its best basketball for the fourth quarter to pull out a 70-59 win over the Palmetto Christian Eagles (1-2) in the Bishops’ home opener.
Limited with foul trouble for most of the third quarter, B.J. Grevey and Dillon Corbett reemerged in the fourth to score the first nine points of an 11-0 Bishop England run that turned a one-point lead into a 64-52 advantage with less than five minutes to play.
Palmetto Christian was able to trim the lead down to seven twice in the final minutes but couldn’t come any closer as Bishop England allowed the Eagles just one field goal in their lowest-scoring quarter of the game.
“We had some guys in foul trouble but our guys who came in really did a wonderful job of stepping up,” Bishop England head coach Bryan Grevey said. “Total team effort. I’m really proud of this team and the effort they gave tonight.”
Palmetto Christian outscored Bishop England 14-5 through the final two minutes of the first quarter to open an early 11-point lead. Ben German scored 10 of his game-high 18 points in the first as J.T. Waters’ penetration set him up for open baseline floaters time and time again.
“The first quarter I really thought we played well,” Palmetto Christian head coach Brian Stanley said. “I challenged my guys to do some of the little things like getting extra-chance points and sharing the ball and I thought they started with a great energy.”
The Bishops adjusted to a zone defense in the second quarter to limit the Eagles’ penetration and help seal the backside. They continued to chip into the Eagles’ lead throughout the second quarter. Two Eagles turnovers in the final minute gave the Bishops a three-point lead headed into halftime.
The momentum carried over into the third quarter where Bishop England opened with a 7-2 run. Ben Carico scored 10 of his team-high 16 points in the second and third quarters to pace the Bishops. Taylor Howell added six of his 11 in the third. Six different Eagles scored in the third quarter to keep the Palmetto Christian within a point by the end of the quarter.
“Our guys just fought,” Stanley said. “They never think they’re out of it so they just keep fighting. We made some mental mistakes in the fourth quarter that cost us but also credit their defense because they put us in some tough spots.”
German added nine rebounds and a block to his big scoring night, and Chris Demarco knocked down three threes as part of a 17-point effort for the Eagles. Waters dished out six assists, grabbed four rebounds and a steal.
Grevey finished with 13 points and nine rebounds, while Nick Vecchiolla added 12 points and two steals for the Bishops. Reed Fosberry turned in four assists and four steals with no turnovers.
Palmetto Christian and Bishop England return to Daniel Island Tuesday at 8 p.m. for game two of the two-game series.
“It was a war tonight and it should be another war next Tuesday night,” Coach Grevey said. “Our kids know so many of their kids and vice versa. They grew up playing together so there’s a lot of emotion and I think all of them definitely were excited for this game and are excited to do it again next week.”