The York Suburban Trojans couldn't have drawn up a much better start than the one they achieved against unbeaten Gettysburg on Wednesday evening.
The Trojans raced out to an early 9-0 advantage just moments into the action.
To make things even better, Gettysburg standout Quadir Copeland picked up a pair of quick fouls during the first three minutes of the opening stanza.
To the Trojans' chagrin, however, there’s a saying in sports that goes something like this: "It isn’t how you start, it’s how you finish."
For the visiting Warriors, that finish was quite impressive.
Trailing by double digits late in the first quarter, the Warriors protected Copeland by switching to a zone defense. Moments later, a 14-0 Gettysburg run put the visitors ahead.
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Suburban’s quick start had vanished and the Trojans were never able to regain the magic of those opening minutes in what became a 67-61 Gettysburg triumph.
Coach knew slow start was coming: The Warriors remained unbeaten on the boys' basketball season by improving to 15-0 overall and 8-0 in York-Adams Division II. The Trojans fell to 12-4 and 7-2.
“It was a start that I knew was going to happen,” Gettysburg coach Lawrence Williams said. “I told a couple of people that the game was going to start the way that it did because we were on (York Suburban’s) home court. We traveled all the way to Eastern York (Tuesday) night and then all the way here (Wednesday night) and we’re playing on back-to-back nights. And they had a lot to prove.”
Turning point: The turning point, ironically enough, happened when Copeland picked up his second foul with 5:17 left in the first quarter. Instead of taking his standout off the court, Williams kept him in the game while switching to a 3-2 zone.
Playing against the zone, the Trojans struggled to find shots inside the paint. That led to more perimeter play, which ended with either missed shots or errant passes that led to turnovers.
Suburban’s last double-digit lead came in the final minute of action in the first quarter. That's when the Gettysburg boys put together their own big run. Copeland, who finished with a game-high 28 points, scored 10 of them in the second quarter when the Warriors turned things around.
“We knew what was coming,” Williams said. “We just had to persevere through that first quarter and just settle in.”
Others step up for Gettysburg in second half: After finishing the half with just those two fouls, Copeland picked up two offensive fouls in the third period. That forced Williams to take his big man off the court for much of the rest of the half.
The home team, however, couldn’t capitalize with the league’s third-leading scorer (21.6 points per game) on the bench. That was primarily because teammate Charles Warren picked up the slack. Warren scored 11 of his 18 points in the second half, most of which came when Copeland was sitting out because of foul trouble.
“The nice thing is the part of the third and fourth quarter showed that we can still play without him,” Williams said. “I think Warren stepped up and showed that he is a dominant force on the court whenever we need him to be.”
Mike Hankey also picked up some of the slack for the Warriors. The guard scored seven of his 13 points in the second half.
Smiling Williams: Wednesday’s victory brought a smile to Williams’ face for a handful of reasons, most of which was beating a high-caliber opponent on its home court. The triumph also gave the Warriors a bit of a cushion over the Trojans in the standings at two games in the loss column.
Perhaps another big reason for the smile was the environment and atmosphere in which his squad displayed resiliency and poise. The gym at Suburban doesn’t have a lot of open space around the court. The student section and bleachers on the sidelines are literally inches away from the court.
“I love this gym, but I also hate it,” Williams said. “It reminds me of our old gym at Gettysburg. We actually practice in that old gym. It’s tight confines and everybody is up on top of you, but this is actually a great environment. And I told our guys before that this is where you want to be. This is the kind of environment where you can show some people that, ‘hey, we can play some basketball.’”
Notes: Anthony Brown and Cam Brewer led the Trojans with 16 and 15 points, respectively. Aidan Hughley, who leads the team in scoring this season at 16 points per game entering the night, was held to 12.
Both sides will get a rematch next Thursday when the Warriors host Suburban.
Hanover 63, Antietam 57: At Hanover, Kyle Garman (16), Andre Caban (15) and Zyaire Myers (13) combined for 44 of Hanover's points in the nonleague victory. Hanover is now 10-6 overall. Antietam fell to 6-8.
West Perry 51, York Tech 39: At Spry, Darnell Wilkes led the Spartans with 10 points. Tech fell to 5-10 overall. West Perry improved to 5-12.
Cumberland Valley 68, Dover 25: At CV, the Eagles fell to one of the top teams in District 3 in a nonleague contest. CV, the No. 2 team in the District 3 6-A power ratings, improved to 14-1. Dover is 2-14.
Fairfield 55, York Country Day 37: At York, the Green Knights moved to 6-10 overall, while YCD dropped to 5-7.
Littlestown 59, Spring Grove 42: At Spring Grove, the Thunderbolts improved to 14-3 overall with the nonleague triumph. Spring Grove is 1-15.
Eastern York 57, Dover 38: At Wrightsville, the Golden Knights earned the Y-A D-II win to improve to 14-5 overall and 7-4 in the division. Dover fell to 2-14 and 0-10. Addison Malone led the Golden Knights with 18 points. Also for Eastern, Breana Grim knocked in 12 points, Victoria Zerbe scored 11 points and Mara Weaver scored 10 points. For the Eagles, Brooke Bowman scored 18 points.
Central York 44, Manheim Twp. 41: At Central, in a battle of District 3 Class 6-A powers, Central emerged victorious in the nonleague contest. The Panthers, which entered at No. 6 in the District 3 6-A power ratings, are now 13-3. Manheim Twp., which entered the game at No. 4 in the District 3 6-A power ratings, fell to 13-4. Central used a 12-4 fourth-quarter surge to rally for the win. Emily Prowell led the Panthers with 15 points. Sarah Berman added 11 and Abby McFerren chipped in 10.
West York 48, New Oxford 40: At New Oxford, the Bulldogs won the nonleague battle to move to 14-3 overall. New Oxford fell to 6-11. Makennah Hoffman (11 points) and Alainna Hopta (10 points) paced the West York attack. Morgan Adams had 19 points and 18 rebounds in a losing cause.
Boiling Springs 32, Hanover 21: At Boiling Springs, Hanover dropped the nonleague contest to fall to 10-8. Boiling Springs is 7-9. Jaycie Miller scored 12 points, accounting for more than half of Hanover's total.
Spring Grove 62, Littlestown 26: At Littlestown, in a nonleague contest, the Rockets rolled to improve to 11-4 overall. Littlestown fell to 8-8. Ellie Glass and Lexi Hoffman had 15 points each for the Rockets. Aracelli Portillo had 13 points for Littlestown.
York Country Day 36, Fairfield 24: At York, the Greyhounds moved to 6-9, while Fairfield fell to 2-15. Rhylen Rouse had 14 points in a losing cause. No Fairfield player reached double digits.
York High 56, South Western 46: At York, the Bearcats picked up their first Y-A D-I win of the season. The Bearcats are now 2-15 overall and 1-9 in the division. South Western is 2-15 and 0-9.
Dover 51, Delone Catholic 16: At Dover, the Eagles grabbed the nonleague triumph and improved to 9-7. Delone fell to 1-14. The Eagles received pins from Justin Rudacille (113), Dakota Grim (132), Mason Lewis (138) and Bradyn Yerges (152). For the Squires, Nate Hart (126) picked up a pin.
South Western 46, Susquehannock 25: At Glen Rock, the Mustangs received pins from Tommy Morris (285), Ethan Baney (152) and Tanner Aumen (182) to secure the nonleague win. For the Warriors, Trent Lewis (120), Blake Romjue (145) and Colby Romjue (160) each picked up pins. South Western is now 9-7. Susquehannock fell to 8-7.
Gettysburg 51, Chambersburg 18: At Chambersburg, in a battle of District 3 Class 3-A powers, the Warriors rolled over the shorthanded Trojans to improve to 17-0. Chambersburg, which was missing five starters, fell to 10-3. Gettysburg is No. 1 in the District 3 3-A power ratings, while Chambersburg entered the match at No. 4.
Bermudian Springs 77, Fairfield 6: At York Springs, the Eagles dominated to improve to 16-2 overall and 5-0 in Y-A D-III. Bermudian clinched at least a share of the division crown. Fairfield fell to 1-10 and 0-5.
Conrad Weiser 63, York Tech 9: At Conrad Weiser, the Spartans picked up a lone pin from Jacob Sharp (220) in the nonleague contest. Tech also got credit for a 72-0 win over Tulpehocken, with all the wins coming by forfeit.
Reach Ryan Vandersloot at email@example.com.