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Trojans address Gettysburg behind the arc

December 30, 2006|by BOB PARASILITI

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - It took a little more than a halftime speech for the Chambersburg boys basketball team to address Gettysburg.

In this case, it was a case of five scored and 20 feet away for the Trojans to put forth a new determination. It started a dramatic turnaround that shot Chambersburg past the Warriors for a 74-43 victory Friday as the Trojans remained undefeated through nine games.

Aaron Hill started a run of five straight Chambersburg 3-point baskets to start the second half to transform a surprisingly small 25-19 advantage into a commanding 40-23 lead by the halfway point of the third period.

"I was disappointed at halftime," Chambersburg coach Shawn Shreffler said. "I didn't think we competed with them in the first half at a level that we are able to. Gettysburg controlled the tempo early and we didn't respond. I was pleased with the way we came out in the third quarter."

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The Trojans became more active with movement on offense and pressure on defense to take the game away from Gettysburg (0-8). In fact, Chambersburg opened the second half with a 22-4 run as Gettysburg began tumbling like a bunch of Lincoln Logs.

"The kid behind me had a lot to do with that," Shreffler said, pointing to Hill. "He didn't practice (Thursday) because he was sick and couldn't keep any food down. He was the reason we were in the game."

Hill, along with forward Jamill Whitehead, twisted the game into the Trojans' favor. Hill didn't show signs of weakness as he helped harass Gettysburg's guards into turnovers to start the decisive run.

"They changed their defense, but it all started in the locker room," Hill said, indicating the Trojans received a rather pointed speech at halftime. "We were being overly passive and once we attacked the zone, we got started. They changed and we got to the middle and tried to extend them once they got out of the 1-3-1."

Gettysburg scored to start the second half before Hill countered with his 3 from the right wing. After Sean Bair drove for a Warriors score, the Trojans put things in motion, hitting four consecutive 3s - two each by Whitehead and Nate Strickler - to take a 17-point advantage that continued to grow.

"Threes ..." Shreffler said. "We created some things off the defense. We got into transition before their defense could get back and set up and got some clean looks."

The story was much different in the first half when Gettysburg and Ron Johnson, the Warriors' 6-foot-7 big man, dictated the early pace of the game. The Warriors built a 12-7 lead after one quarter and moved to a 17-9 lead with 5:00 remaining in the half, with Johnson patrolling the paint and contesting shots.

Chambersburg abandoned the idea of challenging Johnson on the inside just as Gettysburg made a couple of fatal mistakes to end its chances.

"The critical time came with about three minutes left in the second quarter," said Gettysburg coach Jeff Bair. "We wanted to slow it down and hold the ball and we had two outrageous individual shots. You can't do that when you are at a disadvantage and need to have everything go your way to win. We went in down instead of up at the half and then they hit those 3s to change our defensive plan."

Chambersburg closed the first half by outscoring Gettysburg 16-2, including an 11-0 run. The Trojans led 49-31 after three quarters and went on a 17-1 run to start the fourth quarter to put it away.

Strickler and Whitehead led Chambersburg with 14 points each and Hill mustered 12 despite his weakened state, while the Trojans kept all of Gettysburg's scorers out of double figures.

"It's been tough. I've been sleeping a lot and had nothing to eat but Jello," Hill said. "During the warmups, I realized it wasn't going to be easy, but when we got going I forgot all about it. I guess my adrenaline carried me through most of it."

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