Falcons focus in on Lasers
Basketball: Foothills beats Father Lacombe to win tournament final
By: By Remy Greer
| Posted: Wednesday, Feb 20, 2013 06:00 am
It’s not how you start, it’s how you finish that counts.
The Foothills Composite Falcons outscored their opponent 34-16 in the fourth quarter to turn a two-point halftime deficit into a comfortable 96-75 win over the Father Lacombe Lasers in a physical Falcons Classic tournament final, Saturday evening at the Foothills gym.
“We started out as the aggressor and then in that second quarter they hit back as the aggressor,” said Falcons head coach Amron Gwilliam. “I really like how we came out in the third and fourth quarter and made sure we were the aggressors the rest of the game and kind of knocked them on their heels.”
Falcons Senior post Taner Parrington also had a lot to do with the second half surge.
Parrington finished off a tournament to remember with a career-high 42-point performance in a dominant showing on Saturday evening. He had to work for every inch of space against a stingy Lacombe defence.
“I’d rather have a game like that where the refs let everything go then them call every little touch. I love playing like that,” said Parrinton of the battle underneath the basket. “The biggest thing is not letting them get to you. If you’re pushing them back and the refs aren’t calling it then why not?”
The offensive explosion was nice, but it was the Falcons’ play without the ball that ensured the victory.
“We really stepped up our defence in the second half,” Parrington said. “We played a really good two-three zone there and our guards up there were really active and everyone was talking.”
The Falcons were doing most of the talking in the first quarter. Through fast-break points from Jamie Derochie, Hunter Karl and Taylor Armsworthy Foothills carried a modest 22-16 lead into the second quarter. Karl’s touch carried over as he capped off an 8-0 run on a beautiful lay-up to stake Foothills to a 30-18 lead.
Sensing the game getting away from them, Lasers head coach Ian Couture challenged his players to match the physical intensity displayed by the Falcons.
The Father Lacombe players took the message to heart. Lasers forward Majwang Magak displayed his athleticism in hitting consecutive shots from behind the arc and driving the lane and penetrating the Falcons for easy buckets. Father Lacombe went on a 26-12 run to end the half with a 44-42 lead.
“They were crashing the boards hard and we weren’t ready for that at the beginning,” Couture said. “The boys finally responded and decided to play a physical game like them.”
After closing the half at the wrong end of the two-paint game, Gwilliam made some defensive adjustments to halt the Lasers from entering the paint and force them to shoot from the perimeter.
“We talked about it at halftime. That we make sure we contain those guys and keep them out of the paint,” Gwilliam said. “That we make sure we have better defensive rotation, make them take tough contested shots and make sure to rebound the basketball.”
The Falcons heeded the advice in the second-half and carried a 62-59 lead into the final quarter where Parrington, often facing double teams underneath the basket, took over.
“He had a great game. He played his butt off, that’s probably one of the best games I’ve seen him play,” said Gwilliam, who also lauded the play of guards Derochie and Karl in setting the tempo. “We’re getting to the point of the year where we need to play well and need (Taner) to step up and play well. It’s good to see.”
Couture said Parrinton’s play ultimately tilted the scales firmly in Foothills’ favour.
“He’s a very good player, he battled hard and made some great shots near the end and he was the difference,” Couture said. “We were doing a good job getting to the rim and then they started sagging and taking away our penetration.”
Parrington said the defence the Falcons displayed reinforced the importance of defending the basketball as the zone and provincial tournaments rapidly approach.
“Definitely as a team it’s going to help us going forward,” he said. “We found that with good defence we win championships and our defence will carry us into the future.”
The Falcons advanced to the final with a pair of convincing victories. Foothills beat Stirling High mmmmmmmmm on Feb. 17 with Parrington again leading the way with 27 points. Foothills then separated the herd in the semifinal in handing the Brooks Buffaloes a 113-49 thumping. Parrington potted 22 points in the win, while Armsworthy and Anthony Cayetano chipped in with 18 each.