GOING IN FOR THE KILL — Springville-Griffith Institute senior guard Nate Wolcott attacked the rim, in a game against Eden. Photo by Dave DeLuca.
SPRINGVILLE — Springville-Griffith Institute varsity basketball swingman Greg Beatty wasted no time making an impact, in the season opener of his senior year. Beatty drilled a three-pointer from the wing, 20 seconds into the game against Eden, to start Springville’s season on the right note. However, it was his “and-one” lay-up off a steal, late in the fourth quarter, that proved essential in Springville’s 44-29 win against Eden.
“It’s always great to start the year with a win,” said Springville coach Frank Noeson. “The guys understand though, that we have a long haul in front of us, and that we have a lot of improvements to make.”
Beatty’s 3-point play fended off an Eden comeback attempt, in which the Raiders went on a 13-5 run to crawl back. Springville started at 1-0, on the season, behind a game-high 16 points from senior guard Nate Wolcott. Wolcott attacked the rim early and often, scoring 11 of his 16 points in the first half, while being slowed by foul trouble. Wolcott also handed out six assists.
“Nate played outstanding,” said Noeson. “He is much more under control when handling the ball, this year. He makes good decisions when to attack, make the pass, or to pull up and shoot. Both defensively and offensively, he is very aggressive.”
Springville stormed out on a 20-4 run, to start the game; forcing turnovers and turning them into points in transition. Springville came into the game looking avenge a 52-59 overtime loss to Eden, last season.
“We were very aggressive on defense, to start the game,” added Noeson. “The returning players from last year used our [overtime] loss as motivation to make sure we weren’t put in that same situation again, this year. We rebounded well, early on, and limited their shot opportunities.”
Eden guard Brad Palmerton torched Springville in that overtime loss last season, scoring 32 points, including seven 3-pointers. The second time around, Springville limited Palmerton to 10 points and one 3-point field goal.
“Palmerton was certainly the focus for us, on defense,” said Noeson. “Again, not a single one of us forgot about what he did last year, and our goal was to make sure it didn’t happen again. Adam Wolfley really did a nice job of making sure, when he touched the ball, he was in his face. Away from the ball, [he] made it difficult for [Brad] to catch. Devin Pazzuti and Wolcott also helped, in making sure Palmerton didn’t get any clean looks at the basket. Every player on the floor, for us, was aware of where he was.”
Beatty created mismatches for Eden, all night. The 6-foot, 2-inch senior scored both inside and out, netting 15 points for Springville. Beatty knocked down two 3-pointers and attacked the basket off the wing, to score in the paint. Wolfley, with 6 points, chipped in offensively, while checking Palmerton for a majority of the game. Springville rotated 10 players into the game, with eight finding themselves on the score sheet. Springville played man-to-man defense throughout, to prevent Palmerton from hurting them, from the perimeter.
Through three quarters, Springville allowed 12-points, limiting the host Raiders to 4 points in the first quarter, 5 in the second and 3 in the third, before Eden found success in the final frame.
“I think overall, we accomplished our goals, coming into the game. We limited Palmerton and protected the basketball,” said Noeson. “It may not have looked that flashy, but we made smart passes and used [the] clock when needed. We were under control, on both ends of the floor, for the majority of the game. I’m proud of how they played man-to-man defense.”
Springville took on Lake Shore on Dec. 13 in the Griff’s home opener.