Near-perfect start catapults Trojan boys over Blue Devils

MERCERSBURG — So, you’d like to get your basketball season off to a flying start, right?

Ethan Shreffler

Ethan Shreffler

You couldn’t do a whole lot better than what Chambersburg’s boys did to Greencastle-Antrim in the opening round of the Franklin County Tip-Off Tournament at James Buchanan on Friday night.

The Trojans used some lights-out shooting and a physical press to disrupt the Blue Devils in the early going, raced to a 17-2 lead in the blink of an eye and then cruised to an 80-53 victory.

Chambersburg will face Waynesboro, 52-45 winners over James Buchanan, in the championship game Saturday at 7:30. G-A will take on the host Rockets in the consolation game at 4:30.

Trojan coach Shawn Shreffler said, “I thought the guys did a nice job of executing against what they saw. We didn’t know what to expect, but we handled it really well. And we speeded the game up.”

The Trojans’ Ethan Shreffler drained a 3-pointer, then Terell Williams made a steal for a bucket. After the Blue Devils’ Zach Cole scored, a series of G-A turnovers fueled a 12-0 run by Chambersburg.

Braden Byers hit a pair of free throws, Shreffler sank another pair of threes sandwiched around a Williams layup off a nifty pass from Henry Shearer, and Shreffler finished it off with a fast-break basket.

Suddenly, it was 17-2.

“We needed to handle the physicality better than we did,” Greencastle Rick Lewis said. “We did find our legs eventually.”

The Blue Devils were never able to get within fewer than 12 points the rest of the way, and, thanks to a 17-0 run encompassing most of the third period, the Trojans’ largest lead was 34 points.

Shawn Shreffler said, “It’s just one game and we’ll have to get better. We did have some lulls, and some of that had to do with the fouls. The whistles kind of stopped the flow of the game and we had to sit some guys.”

The Trojans did hit seven 3-pointers — four by Shreffler, who had 20 points — but they did the most damage at the rim. Of the 31 field goals, three came on offensive rebounds and 13 came on layups, many on drives down the lane.

Zach Cole

Zach Cole

Lewis said, “We did a poor job of rotating in our man defense, and their athletic ability was tough to handle.”

“Our spacing on offense is important, because it helps to open up lanes,” Shreffler said. “We have some kids that when they see an opening, they’re going to be aggressive.”

Williams added 15 points for Chambersburg, freshman Brant Byers had 9 and Gus Mace and Carter Sollenberger each had eight.

A bright spot for the Blue Devils was the play of Cole, who scored 11 of his team’s first 13 points and ended up with 19 points.

“Zach played well and battled hard,” Lewis said. “In the second half we handled the ball much better (13 turnovers in the first half; 2 in the second) and got more shots. At least we can say the first game is out of the way.”

Chambersburg 80, Greencastle-Antrim 53
J.T. English 3 1-2 10, Riley Gembe 0 0-0 0, Thomas Lewis 1 2-3 4, Zach Cole 7 5-6 19, Adam Root 2 0-0 5, Adam Murr 4 2-2 10, Bobby Emberson 1 0-4 3, Ethan Shank 0 2-2 2, Tim Ehko 0 0-0 0, Jackson Wright 0 0-0 0. Totals 18 12-19 53.
Braden Byers 1 2-6 4, Ethan Shreffler 7 2-2 20, Aaron Maynard 3 0-0 6, Henry Shearer 1 0-0 2, Terell Williams 5 5-5 15, Malaki Blair 3 0-0 6, Caden Eby 0 0-0 0, Gus Mace 2 2-2 8, Carter Sollenberger 4 0-2 8, Trestin Mosina-Hill 1 0-1 2, Brant Byers 4 0-0 9, Jacob Bassham 0 0-0 0, Hunter Noel 0 0-0 0. Totals 31 11-18 80.
Greencastle             9   13   12   19   —   53
Chambersburg     23   19   20   18   —   80
3-point shots — G-A 5 (English 3, Root, Emberson); Chbg 7 (Shreffler 4, Mace 2, Bre.Byers). Shooting — GA 18-41 (44%); Chbg 31-58 (53%). Turnovers — GA 15; Chbg 12.