Wednesday, November 25, 2009

No time to rest...Hoops is back!

from today's Waukesha Freeman --

Catholic Memorial 72
East Troy 60

Schell sparks Crusaders
Guard’s 24 points lead Memorial in opener
By Jeff Hagenau Freeman Correspondent

EAST TROY – Derek Schell had a big night.

Schell, a 6-foot-1 senior guard, scored a career-high 24 points and added four assists as the Catholic Memorial High School boys basketball team defeated East Troy 72-60 in a season-opening nonconference game Tuesday.

Leading 34-31 at halftime, the Crusaders outscored East Troy 19-9 in the third quarter, including what proved to be a decisive 17-4 run.

Schell, who converted a game-high four 3-pointers, had eight points to help ignite the critical spree for Memorial.

“Everything just seemed to click,” said Schell, a Hillsdale College (Mich.) recruit who had 14 points in the first half. “My teammates did a nice job of distributing the ball around the perimeter for the open look. I just shot the ball well in the first half and kept gaining confidence as the game went on.

“We’ve played a lot of scrimmages in this gym over the years so I really felt comfortable throughout the night.”

Senior Austin Pucylowski, a 6-4 center, followed with 17 points, and sophomore guard Charlie Walsh had 11 points for Memorial, which made 29 of 40 free throws. Senior guard T.J. Bray, the reigning Classic 8 Conference Player of the Year, added nine points and 11 rebounds.

“We were fired up coming into the second half and really tried to assert ourselves,” said Pucylowski, who made 13 of 18 free throws. “That’s when we crashed the boards hard, made it to the freethrow line and turned the game around.

“Coming into the game, we still had a few question marks so it was great to see everyone step up and start the season on a strong note.”

Memorial coach Dean Bellanti was encouraged by the way his team overcame a sluggish first half with a big run in the third quarter.

“We made a good first impression,” said Bellanti, who guided the Crusaders to second place in the Classic 8 last season. “From start to finish, it was one of those games where both sides struggled to establish a good flow, so it was nice to see everything come together in the second half. When the game was close in the third quarter, we really established ourselves inside and put together a nice run to pull away.”

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