Maine West shook off a cold-shooting first half and took control of its third-round game in the Warrior Classic boys basketball tournament Friday.
Rather than engage in a perimeter contest with Corliss, the Warriors (2-1) changed their approach in the third quarter. They led 24-22 at halftime, but neither team showed much consistency on offense.
Defensively, Maine West limited the Trojans to just 7 points in the third quarter, and offensively, they turned loose the fast break that led to 26 points and a 50-29 lead after three. Maine West's second-half revival led to a 66-39 victory.
"We missed too many jump shots," said Joel Ferraren (19 points) of the first-half offensive struggle. "We started attacking the basket (in the second half). This year, we'll be more of a running team."
"In the first half, we didn't play as well as we could," said Matt Acevedo (game-high 20 points). "He (coach John Bongiorno) wanted us to be stronger, attack the hoop and play smarter."
"We were missing a lot of easy shots in the first half," Bongiorno said. "We like to get out and run. It's something we did against Lincoln Park, too.
"That's what we're trying to do, get some easy hoops."
Not only did the Warriors attack the basket, but they also kept the taller Trojans (0-3) from doing the same, and they accomplished one specific defensive goal.
"We thought we could control No. 15 (Bryant Clark)," Bongiorno said. Clark finished with 2 points.
The Warriors also had little trouble solving Corliss' trapping zone press.
"During practice, we worked on the press breaker, and we kept working on it," Acevedo said.
"It's nice to be 2-1 going into (Saturday's) game with Maine South," Bongiorno said. "We can score points, but we've got to defend."
Ferraren scored 11 of his 19 points in the second half, and Jamal Sherman added 9 off the bench for the Warriors. Jaquan Holiday led Corliss with 10 points, and Richard Mitchell and Kewain Archie each scored 9 for the Trojans.