Indians top Galatia
Selby tosses in 27-points, Johnston City improves to 3-7 overall

JOHNSTON CITY - For a program with a new coach and system in place, any early season win is a welcome sight.

And it certainly doesn't hurt any that a veteran backcourt specialist has a monster night offensively

Head coach Scott Burzynski and his Johnston City Indians picked up a non-conference victory at home on Friday night thanks to Chase Selby.

Selby, a 6-foot junior guard, netted a game-best 27-points on Friday night against Galatia, ripping the nets with four 3-pointers along with six other field goals.

He had some help with two other Tribesmen hitting for double-digits on the night; Matt Campbell and Houston Hall.

Five-foot-nine senior Campbell added to the team total of 3-pointers made (nine) with three of his own while ending up with 17-points.

Hall, a 5-foot-9 junior guard, added two more 20-footers and finished with 15-points.

Johnston City improved to 3-7 on the season with the victory that wasn't easy to pick up.

Galatia fell behind early but the Bearcats continued to battle back.

Head coach Rod Wallace got his team going in the second half after being down double-figures in the 16-minutes.

The Bearcats were topped by 6-foot junior guard Austin Stevens with 22-points while Ben Mitchell, a 6-foot-3 senior forward, got going in the lane and ended up with 14.

Will Pulliam, a 6-foot-4 senior, also gave Johnston City problems in the lane as he added 10-points to the totals.

Being down in the early part of the third quarter 34-20, the Bearcats got on a roll for a 14-0 run to tie the game.

They accomplished the scoring burst by getting some key rebounds when the defense matched the offense for a nearly four minutes stretch.

Sophomore guard Braxton Lane added seven-points for the Bearcats with a key 3-pointer in the third quarter as part of the scoring run.

Stevens, Mitchell and Pulliam all produced in the blitz with Pulliam's score on a drive on the baseline with 3:48 remaining in the quarter leveling the score at 34.

“We actually came out and played four minutes of good, solid basketball. We made good choices with the ball. We did some smart things but then we went right back to the way we started,” said Coach Wallace. “We went back to the way we played in the first 16-minutes. That is the conversation we just had in the locker room.”

This could have taken the wind out of the hosts but it actually worked in reverse.

Johnston City immediately turned the tide with a 14-2 scoring journey of their own.

And Selby blazed the path with cuts to the basket and fast break conversions added to his resume.

“He (Selby) can hit those shots and we ran some nice sets for him tonight,” said Coach Burzynski. “We drew up some stuff and it's nice when they work.”

Six of the 14 came from Selby in succession to close the run and seniors' Luca Gualdoni and Tyler Yotkewich added points in the streak.

Guadoni did his damage on the night by hitting the boards.

He finished with just six-points but grabbed a team-high 10-rebounds to pace the Indians to a 36-30 rebounding edge.

“We work on it (rebounding) a lot. Defensively and offensively, going after the ball,” said Coach Burzynski. “Tonight we did a good job defending them and we went after them on offensive rebounds.”

Selby scored six-consecutive points for the Indians to close out the third quarter.

Two of the scores were on fast breaks and he made a nice cut to the basket to close the quarter at 50-39 Indians.

Selby added another score on yet another set play in the early moments of the final frame.

Coming off of a pick, he found himself open from the right corner from beyond the arc.

His 20-footer pushed the Indians advantage to 53-39.

“In the past a team would make a run at us and how we responded wasn't always good. Tonight we definitely did a good job of responding,” said Coach Burzynski. “We got the buckets when we needed to. But the biggest thing I was happy about today was that we shared the ball. We were working on some back cuts, and some other things and tonight they worked.”

The Bearcats didn't give up in the final minutes, cutting the lead to just seven with 5:32 left.

A 3-pointer by Stevens and a free throw by Mitchell closed the gap to just 55-48.

But that was the last big move by Galatia.

Selby connected on his fourth 3-pointer and Campbell closed his scoring night with another cut to the goal, taking a pass from Houston to a lay in and a 67-55 lead with just under two minutes remaining.

“We gave up too many offensive rebounds and we gave Selby too many points and we knew that was a key,” said Coach Wallace. “We just didn't do it, it was that simple.”

In the first quarter, the Indians looked like that they were going to make quick work of the guests, getting out to a 15-6 lead.

Selby scored three times in the quarter, and Houston added a pair of buckets.

Selby converted a steal on a fast break after he began stockpiling 3-pointers.

Houston also added a 3-pointer in the quarter.

Johnston City held a 31-18 halftime spread, despite missing seven free throws in the second quarter.

Selby added a steal after committing a turnover himself, and his drive to the goal made it 28-16 with :58 left.

Johnston City ended up 24-of-52 from the floor on the night (46.1 percent) while Galatia hit just 20-of-52 (38.4 percent).

Neither team could buy a free throw on this night as they both struggled.

The Indians hit just 12-of-27 from the line; Galatia was only 13-of-22.

“This was a very big win for us. The loose balls on the floor we had a white jersey on it almost every time. We want to get ourselves into getting down on the floor. Get the rebound and make the extra pass. The guys did it tonight,” said Coach Burzynski. “It was a win, we'll take it and move on to Christmas. We didn't shoot free throws very well but we made some down the stretch when we needed them.”

Both teams are entered in next week's Sesser-Valier Holiday Tournament.

Coach Burzynski's club is the eighth seed and will tackle Odin in the first round on Tuesday at 3:30 pm.

“I can't wait. Obviously Sesser-Valier runs a great tournament and we are happy to be a part of it,” said Coach Burzynski. “It's a special place for me (home town). We are going to go up there and compete. We want to play four games, that's our goal.”

Coach Wallace's bunch will face third-seeded Christopher at 10:30 am on Tuesday.

“In the past four games we had put together runs for the entire game but tonight we just didn't perform,” said Coach Wallace. “That was on us. We are looking for consistency.”

Johnston City
Galatia (57) – Stevens 5 2 6-10 22, Mitchell 4 0 6-9 14, Pulliam 5 0 0-1 10, Lane 2 1 0-0 7, Hankins 0 0 1=-2 1, Pritchett 0 0 0-0 0, Glenn 0 0 0-0 0, Beers 0 0 0-0 0, Triplett 0 1 0-0 3.
2FG-16, 3FG-4, FT-13-22, PF-19.

Johnston City (69) – Gualdini 2 0 2-5 6, Beasley 0 0 0-0 0, Campbell 3 3 2-4 17, Hall 2 2 5-7 15, Johnson 1 0 0-2 2, McPherson 0 0 0-0 0, Selby 6 4 3-9 27, Yotkewich 1 0 0-0 2.
2FG-15, 3FG-9, FT-12-27, PF-17.

Fouled Out – Mitchell - Galatia.
Technical Fouls – None.