Cavs down Burns
The East Rutherford Cavaliers (12-3, 3-0 SMAC) used a monster run in the third quarter to grab as much as a 34-point lead and allowed their bench to gain valuable experience in the fourth quarter in a 64-46 win over Burns.
“I think the third quarter was the key,” said coach Brad Levine. “We played great defense and forced five or six turnovers in a row and by that time the game was over.”
Travis- Waldroup Rodriquez scored the first six points for East by draining two 3-point shots in the opening minute of play. Jarvis Hopper garnered a put back and scored on a back-door play off a pass from Rodriquez as the home team bolted to a 12-2 lead.
Burns finished the quarter on a 6-1 run thanks to four points from Chris Montgomery as East led 13-8 at the end of the first quarter.
East exploded on a 9-0 run to start the second quarter, keyed by Hopper and Devonte Boykins.
Hopper began the run with an old fashioned thee point play while Boykins used his speed to get to the rim for a bucket or to find an open teammate. By the time the dust settled, East had grabbed a commanding 24-8 lead.
After that lead grew to as many as 19 points, Burns began to claw their way back in the game. Quintel Hauser went to work in the post while Montgomery got hot from the outside. When Hauser converted his second 3-point play of the quarter, Burns pulled to within 29-18. Hopper converted a fast break layup at the halftime buzzer to push the lead to 31-18 at the break.
East continued to run to start the third quarter as they used a trapping defense to jump start the offense. After numerous fast break buckets pushed the lead to 20 points, the Cavs kept their foot on the gas.
The quarter culminated when Boykins found Donald Wilkins on a long outlet pass and threw down a one handed slam. Roddric Ross also had five quick points as East led 54-22 at the end of the third frame.
The final frame belonged almost entirely to the East bench and as a result the offense struggled. As a result, the Cavs scored only two points in the first six minutes of the quarter as Burns shrank the deficit to 14 points.
The starters then returned and pushed the game back out to an 18 point bulge to account for the 64-46 final.
“I could have run the score up,” said Levine of his decision to play the bench in the fourth quarter. “But what is the point of that. The kids on the bench work just as hard in practice as everyone else and they deserve a reward.”
Hopper and Waldroup-Rodriquez each scored 18 points to lead the way for East, while Montgomery led all scorers with 20 points for Burns.