Tuesday, June 19, 2018
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Eagle boys make zone press work wonders against Broncos

Lacking much size, the Brady boys basketball team turned to speed and intensity to defeat the Wauneta-Palisade Broncos on the road Friday night 54-38.

The Eagles opened the season with a full-court zone press that kept the Broncos at bay through the first half.

“We started with the press and then backed into a 2-2-1 zone defense,” said Eagle coach David Jacobs. “It kept working so we stuck with it. I guess if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it, right?”

Brady cruised out to a 15-6 lead in the first quarter and pushed ahead to 33-13 at halftime.

“We are a quicker team this year,” Jacobs said. “We don’t have the kind of size we had last year so we have to compensate with our quickness.”

Brady’s speed had Jacobs a little concerned at times during the first half, though, as the Eagles committed 14 of the team’s 16 turnovers before the break.

“We did a better job of taking care of the ball in the second half and we also got a little better in our half-court offense,” the coach said. “That helter-skelter kind of scoring off the press isn’t always going to be there so we’ve got to learn to score in the half-court game.”

Senior Zach Mann led the Eagles in scoring with 20 points including a pair of three-pointers.

Freshman Nate Sitorius added 10 points for Brady while senior Bryley Roper pulled down 10 rebounds, offered four assists and grabbed four steals.

The Eagles (1-0) will host Paxton on Friday.

The Tigers were pre-season ranked at No. 2 in Class D-1 by the Omaha World-Herald and started this season with a pair of wins over Medicine Valley and Eustis-Farnam.

“Paxton is an athletic team,” Jacobs said. “They’re fundamentally sound and they score big in transition. We know we’re not going to be successful if we turn the ball over 14 times in a half, that’s for sure.”

Tipoff is set for approximately 8 p.m.

Brady will then travel to Cody-Kilgore on Saturday for their first conference matchup of the season.

The Cowboys are 1-1 and Jacobs said they are down in numbers this season.

Saturday’s game is set to start at 6:30 p.m.