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Gembe leads Blue Devils

December 09, 2006|by TIM KOELBLE

GREENCASTLE, Pa. - Jaren Gembe has proven already this year he at least owns the Susquenita boys basketball team.

For the second time in eight days, the Greencastle senior led his team past the Blackhawks, this time scoring 24 points in a 47-38 Blue Devils win.

Last Saturday, Gembe had scored 20 points as Greencastle beat Susquenita 60-43 in the Bobcat Tipoff Tournament.

"I don't know what it is. I just like playing against them," the 5-foot-11 guard said.

Greencastle (3-1), ranked No. 8 in the Patriot-News statewide Class AAA preseason poll, was playing without 6-foot-5 Dameatric Scott (school-related issues), Treavor Gelsinger, Adam Ritchey and Levie Holman (injuries).

"We were a little shorthanded and we will be for the next few games," said coach Garen Gembe. "This is going to give some of the other guys a good chance to play, and when we get back to full strength, they'll be able to contribute off the bench."

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Gelsinger, recovering from a broken thumb, is hoping to play within two weeks. The Blue Devils will be near full strength when Scott and Holman come back, but Ritchey is scheduled for shoulder surgery and will not return.

Susquenita (0-4) employed a zone defense, leading Jaren Gembe to drop along the backside of the Blue Devils' 1-3-1 offense to score 17 of Greencastle's 26 points.

"Against the zone we thought we could attack them from the back and Jaren can hide back there pretty good," said Garen Gembe. "Early in the season it's a good learning experience to play against that kind of zone."

The Blackhawks stayed even with Greencastle at the first break before Jaren Gembe hit a pair of long-range 3-pointers that helped stake the Blue Devils to a 26-19 halftime lead.

Susquenita closed to within 35-31 at the end of the third quarter, but the Blue Devils put together a quick 8-0 run in the first four minutes of the fourth to take a 41-31 lead.

Rusty Cordell hit a goal, Ty Thrush had two free throws, Gembe scored on a nifty assist from Mack Frederick then topped off the run with a twisting, acrobatic drive down the paint for two.

"It was fortunate to go in," Gembe said of his twister.

The Blue Devils offset their 34 percent shooting (17 of 50) with a stifling trap defense to force Susquenita into 26 turnovers.

"Their zone slowed us down a little bit, but we played good defense and with the steals we had we got into a pretty good transition game," said Gembe.

Jordan Gembe led Greencastle with nine rebounds.

Susquenita had only three players score, led by Mike Wells' 15 points.

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