By ERIC X. VICCARO
The Valle Catholic High School boys’ basketball team learned a valuable lesson from Friday night’s home game versus Park Hills Central.
It’s tough to overcome a slow start.
The Warriors were down 20-9 at the end of one quarter, and 36-20 at intermission, en route to a 72-59 loss.
Valle Catholic head coach Tyler Search admitted the slow start hurt the Warriors, who valiantly fought to cut Park Hills Central’s lead to single digits in the second half.
“We got it to a six-point deficit,” Search said. “We were where we wanted to be with six minutes left. We were in good position; but, it was just too hard to overcome against a good team. I am proud of our guys.”
Chase Fallert sank a 3-pointer from the right wing with 5:53 remaining in the fourth quarter, cutting the Rebels’ lead to 61-55.
But, Central’s Mason Williams responded with a 3-ball of his own, extending the Rebels’ lead back to a minimum of three possessions.
Cory Stoll, who played his finest game of the season, made one free throw to cut it back to 64-56 at the 5:12 mark of the fourth. Stoll netted a season-high 16 points, with six rebounds and four assists.
However, that’s as close as the Warriors would get the rest of the way — and Valle Catholic dropped to 4-3 heading into Tuesday night’s game at Herculaneum.
Search said the Rebels’ were a stout rebounding team, grabbing a dozen boards on the offensive glass alone.
What’s more, Central’s offense was smooth — very smooth — with freshman Jobe Bryant dropping in 18 points and Williams 16.
Bryant finished the game with 13 free-throw attempts, and the Rebels were 11-of-19 (57.9 percent) from the free-throw line.