Selinsgrove rally falls short against Shikellamy
By: Selinsgrove Athletics | Selinsgrove Athletics | December 14, 2021
SELINSGROVE — Selinsgrove coach Justin Keiser's greatest fear for the Seals opener came true on Tuesday night.
"I was worried that might happen early in the game with it being the first game, the crowd being so energetic and hype," Keiser, who was coaching his first game with the Seals, said. "I knew there would be some nerves. I also had some idea that some of our guys when they got in the moment would start to do their own thing, instead of staying within in the team concept. I think our offense really turned into a lot of one-on-one stuff in the first half, instead of sharing the ball."
Shikellamy jumped out to a double-digit lead in the first half, and held off a Selinsgrove rally, in a 53-46 win for the Braves.
Every time Selinsgrove made a run in the second half, the Braves and sophomore guard Cameron Lenner had an answer in Tuesday's night's Heartland Athletic Conference-Division I opener for both teams.
Lenner scored eight of his game-high 21 points in the fourth quarter, including five straight to turn a five-point lead into a 10-point lead.
Isaiah Ulrich knocked down a 3-pointer for Selinsgrove with 4:11 left to pull the Seals within 43-38. The teams exchanged turnovers, and Shikellamy coach Bill Zeigler drew up a play to get Lenner an open corner 3-pointer, which Lenner knocked down with 3:23 left in the game.
He followed with two foul shots with 2:47 left to give the Braves a 48-38 lead.
The Seals (0-1) weren't quite done yet. Ulrich hit a 3-pointer with 2:12 left to cut the lead to seven. Selinsgrove forced an alternate possession, but got called for a technical foul with 1:50 left in the game.
Lenner made one foul shot to push the lead to eight, but on the ensuing Shikellamy possession, Selinsgrove freshman Gavin Bastian picked off a pass, and converted a traditional three-point play with 1:29 left in the game to pull Selinsgrove within 51-46.
"Defensively, we were allowing to catch the ball with ease, and in the second half, we really tried to be in the passing lanes, and really try to deny things," Keiser said. "I think we did a better job of not making it easy for them offensively in the second half."
Lenner missed a 3-pointer on the next possession, but the Seals turned the ball over. Ryan Williams knocked down two foul shots with 26.2 seconds left for the final margin of victory for the Braves.
"Sometimes our young guards forget that clock management is more important than a shot," Shikellamy coach Bill Zeigler said. "When your put in situations like this, in front of a big crowd, it's a learning experience. We grew up a little bit, and we were able to come out with the win."
It didn't look like Tuesday's rivalry matchup would ever be close. The Seals made just five first-half field goals. By the time Kaden Hoffman scored early in the second quarter, Shikellamy built an early 15-2 lead.
Selinsgrove cut the lead to eight midway through the second quarter as Ryan Reich had seven of his nine points in the second quarter. However, John Peiffer knocked down a 3-pointer, and Trey Wallace scored inside to give Shikellamy a 27-11 lead on its way to a 14-point halftime lead.
"I was worried that might happen early in the game with it being the first game, the crowd being so energetic and hype," Keiser said. "I knew there would be some nerves. I also had some idea that some of our guys when they got in the moment would start to do their own thing, instead of staying within in the team concept. I think our offense really turned into a lot of one-on-one stuff in the first half, instead of sharing the ball."
Hoffman also finished in double figures for Shikellamy with 10 points, while Williams finished with nine, and Peifer finished with seven.
Ulrich led the Seals with 16 points, while Reich had nine points and 12 rebounds. Blake Haddon chipped in eight points, and Bastian scored all seven of his points in the second half.
SHIKELLAMY 53, SELINSGROVE 46
Shikellamy (2-1) 53
Ryan Williams 1 7-9 9; Cameron Lenner 6 6-8 21; John Peifer 3 0-0 7; Trey Wallace 3 0-0 6; Kaden Hoffman 3 3-5 10; Asher Moyer 0 0-2 0. Totals 16 16-24 53.
3-point goals: Lenner 3, Peifer, Hoffman.
Did not score: Caleb Kashner, Xavier Fashaw.
Selinsgrove (0-1) 46
Isaiah Ulrich 5 3-6 16; Ryan Reich 4 0-0 9; Blake Haddon 3 1-1 8; Spencer George 1 1-6 3; Nathaniel Hackenberger 1 0-0 3; Gavin Bastian 3 1-1 7. Totals 17 6-13 46.
3-point goals: Ulrich 3, Reich, Haddon, Hackenberger.
Did not score: Reis Naugle.
Score by quarters
Shikellamy;11;17;10;15 — 53
Selinsgrove;2;12;15;17 — 46
JV: Shik, 49-46. High scorers: Shik, Moyer and Fashaw, 11 each; Sel, Gabe Paulhamus, 13.