Trojans can’t match powerful CD in opening defeat



Paris Banks of Chambersburg takes a shot among several Central Dauphin players, including Darrien Berrios-Rivera (35), during the Rams’ 62-42 win Friday night at CASHS Field House. Photo by Casey Kauffman.


CHAMBERSBURG — This was not the ideal matchup for Chambersburg’s boys basketball team to open the season.

Chambersburg’s James Lilley is surrounded by three Central Dauphin players. Photo by Casey Kauffman.

Central Dauphin entered 2021 as the Mid Penn Commonwealth favorite, and even though star freshman Malachi Palmer did not play Tuesday night at CASHS Field House (possible concussion), the Rams showed why they are ranked so high.

CD used its size and experience advantages to earn a 62-42 victory over the Trojans, who kept it close (24-19) until midway through the second period.

Chambersburg has no starters back and only three players who competed Tuesday had varsity experience. The Rams, meanwhile, have several starters returning, and enjoyed a healthy size advantage that they used effectively on offense and defense.

“Just getting to play a game was good,” Trojan coach Shawn Shreffler said. “But we wanted to play somebody before we played these guys. You could tell the difference in the level of experience — their familiarity with each other in a year like this is a big plus. We can’t simulate in practice what we saw tonight, so we were out of synch.”


The Trojans hung close early, getting threes from Carter Sollenberger and Gus Mace, plus four points from Malaki Blair in the first quarter, while Jacob Bassham scored five of eight points in the second period early to make it 24-19 in CD’s favor.

But the Rams scored 10 of the next 13 points, with Ryan Smith (13 points) scoring five of them, to lead 34-22 by halftime. It was more of the same in the third, when Central Dauphin outscored Chambersburg 16-5.

The Trojans were stifled by the Rams’ tough man-to-man defense — Chambersburg shot only 33% from the field — and were not able to keep CD from scoring points in the paint.

Chambersburg’s Gus Mace (35) drives against Justice Easter of Central Dauphin. Photo by Casey Kauffman.


Shreffler said, “They played physical, they are big and they have length. And they played with a cohesiveness that you have from playing together as long as they have.”

Bassham and Blair led the Trojans with 11 points each and Sollenberger had 6.

“We’ll get better,” Shreffler said. “We saw tonight what we have to go up against, and where we have to improve. It was just hard to get into a flow tonight; actually, they made it difficult for us to get anything going.

“But our effort was really good. I thought Jayden Jones provided some toughness and James Lilley played really hard. We get wo practices, and then we’ll play maybe the second-best team in the league (Cumberland Valley) on Friday. I think our kids’ heads are in the right place.”

NOTES: The Trojans added a game to their schedule — this Saturday (7:30), they will travel to play Wilson (3-0) and star Stevie Mitchell, who is a Marquette recruit … The Rams, who lost to Reading in their opener Monday in OT, got dunks from Donovan Hill and Justice Easter … Palmer is considered one of the top five freshmen in the country.

Central Dauphin 62, Chambersburg 42
De’von Haggans 3 2-2 8, Andrew Renaldi 1 0-0 3, Ryan Smith 4 3-5 13, Donovan Hill 3 0-0 6, Justice Easter 2 0-0 5, Keon Dockens 3 1-1 7, Darrien Berrios-Rivera 3 0-0 6, Christian Wilburn 0 1-2 1, Grayson Harford 3 2-2 8, Daron Haggans 2 0-0 5. Totals 24 9-12 62.
Jacob Bassham 3 2-2 11, Malaki Blair 3 4-5 11, Carter Sollenberger 2 0-0 6, Noah Yeager 0 0-0 0, Gus Mace 1 0-0 3, Paris Banks 1 0-0 2, Jayden Jones 0 0-1 0, James Lilley 0 4-6 4, Nevin Yeager 0 0-0 0, Hunter Noel 1 0-0 2, Andon Martin 1 1-3 3, Parker Knepper 0 0-0 0, Ian Stewart 0 0-0 0. Totals 13 10-17 42.
Central Dauphin              16   18   16   12   —   62
Chambersburg                 10   12    5   15    —   42
3-point shots — CD 5 (Smith 2, Renaldi, Easter, Da.Haggans; Chbg 6 (Bassham 2, Sollenberger 2, Blair. Mace). Turnovers — CD 17; Chbg 1. Shooting — CD 24-46 (52%); Chbg 13-39 (33%).