NEW BETHLEHEM, Pa. – The Redbank Valley Bulldogs were able to defend their home court from the Union Knights with a 58-34 victory.
For the majority of this contest, defense was key. Redbank Valley used their full-court press to energize their offense, with Bryson Bain and Chris Marshall leading the charge with 19 and 18 points, respectively. Though the Bulldogs’ defense was tough throughout the whole game, Union was still able to generate some offense, with Caden Rainey ending with 20 points.
Redbank Valley started their aggressive defensive stance from the beginning, playing with a full-court press in the game’s starting minutes. The pressure forced Union into some bad passes and allowed Redbank to create several turnovers early on. Even though the Bulldogs were able to get good looks and stop Union’s offense almost completely in the first quarter, Redbank Valley struggled to find the basket at times but ended the quarter up 13-6.
In response to Redbank Valley’s press and zone defense, Union started to run their own zone in the second quarter. This adjustment worked well early in the quarter, as the Knights cut the lead to five, 16-11. Unfortunately for the Knights, the Bulldogs were soon able to find gaps in the zone and hit several big shots late in the second. Redbank Valley was able to hit five three-point shots during this quarter, and the Bulldogs ended the quarter with a 32-16 lead.
The second half started with a much slower pace than the first, as Redbank Valley abandoned their full-court press. Between the slower pace and the Bulldogs’ foul trouble, it looked like Union would mount a comeback as they cut the Bulldogs’ lead down to 32-22. The run caused Redbank Valley to go back to their full-court press to stifle Union’s rising offense. The Bulldogs retook control making the score at the end of the third quarter 42-26. Redbank Valley kept their tough defense going through the fourth quarter, with Union only scoring eight points in the period as Redbank Valley cruised home, winning 58-34.