January 10th, 2018

Rocks advance to LIT semis without Johnson or Scrubb

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Conor Revell

Managing Editor

Rocks advance to LIT semis without Johnson or Scrubb
Trinity's Robby Springfield plays good defense / photo by Conor Revell

Trinity’s basketball team was missing its two leading scorers in David Johnson and Jay Scrubb Wednesday evening.

But, their winning ways continued as the Rocks cruised Male 53-39 in a Republic Bank Louisville Invitational Tournament quarterfinal game at Valley.

“We can’t worry about missing David and Jay, we still have to play,” Trinity head coach Mike Szabo said. “I’m proud of our guys. We got off to a great start and jumped right on them and guys that normally don’t start stepped up and that’s great to see.”

Trinity (15-1) jumped out to a 12-0 lead and led 26-12 at the half. Male (12-7) never got any closer than 10 points in second half.

“We came out prepared to play, Trinity senior Robby Springhill said. “We made sure we played hard on defense and then when we were on offense we played fast with the ball. That helped us when we had the ball.”

It wasn’t always pretty as Trinity only scored 15 points combined in the second and third quarters.

Junior Jamil Hardaway stepped up in a big way for the Rocks getting a double-double - 11 points and 11 rebounds.

“We are a young team so I definitely felt like I had to have more of a leadership role,” Hardaway said. “We had a freshman, we had a sophomore, we a junior, and only two seniors playing. This was one of those times where I had to become a leader.”

Szabo was happy with the Hardaway played.

“He had a lot of opportunities,” Szabo said. “He’s plays active, he plays hard, he has to have opportunities. He did a nice job of screening, opening up and rolling, and gets a ton of offensive rebounds. He just plays hard. I love Jamil.”

Turnier provided the scoring punch recording 15 points Robby Springhill chipped in 11 points.

“Everyone had to step up tonight,” Turnier said. “Guys like Robby (Springhill) and Kolton (Rice) played more than usually we do, but our plan was still the same. We wanted to move the ball around.”

Tyren Moore led Male with 16 points while Cameron Pope recorded eight points and Alex Hummel chipped in six points.

Trinity only made 20 of 57 (35.1 percent) from the field 4 of 14 (28.6 percent) from three-point land and hit 9 of 13 (69.2 percent) from the free-throw line.

“We knew they would go out really on offense and then they wouldn’t get back on defense in time,” Szabo said. “My teammates would look for me to sprint down the court and then when they got down the court, I would go for the basket and they had to foul me.”

Male had issues scoring too and only hit 15 of 35 (42.9 percent) from the field including 4 of 11 (36.4 percent) from three-point and 5 of 7 (71.4 percent) from the charity stripe.

While their lengthiest guys were missing in Johnson and Scrubb, the Rocks dominated the glass, grabbing 35 rebounds, 10 more than the Bulldogs.

“We did a great job of boxing out,” Hardaway said. “Our two biggest rebounders were out so our coaches were stressing to us that we needed to muscle our opponent around so that we could get rebounds.”

The Bulldogs were also pressured defensively and turned it over 13 times. Trinity only coughed it up three times.  

Other than Johnson and Scrubb, the Rocks are fairly healthy.

“Jay is currently out, Kolton Rice was out of practice yesterday, he played tonight some,” Szabo said. “Other than that we have only had one guy here and one guy there that has been out due to sickness.”

Butler defeated Ballard 60-56 in its quarterfinal game and will face Trinity in the semifinals Friday night at 6:30 p.m.


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