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Hopewell Junior High Basketball

Hopewell Junior High Basketball Blue Team Play Their Best Game of Season but Fall Short

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It’s been a difficult start of the season for Hopewell Junior High Basketball Blue Team.

The first two games of the 2023-24 season have been a learning experience for this group of boys as they’ve moved up a section and are playing a higher level of basketball teams, like Beaver and Beaver Falls to start the season.

Today, Hopewell traveled to take on the Blackhawk Couguars and although they didn’t win, Coach Gaguzis team played their best game of the season, losing 47-34.

Despite the loss, there were plenty of positives to take from today’s game like 1) the job Hopewell did rebounding both offensively and defensively with Nykyeron Leonora, Andrew Arzberger, Zack Sampson and Luke Vukovcan leading the way. 2) In the second half, the Hopewell guards (Sampson, Ryan Gaguzis and Josh Gill) did a nice job of breaking Blackhawk’s full court press and cut down the turnovers. 3) While in their halfcourt offense, Hopewell did their best job of the season running their offense sets and got up plenty of shots.

1ST QUARTER SUMMARY:
-Hopewell ability to break the press leads to offense as Arzberger grabs and offense rebound and puts it back in. Hopewell 2-0.
-Sampson, who led Hopewell in scoring today with 15, got his first basket as he puts in a shot from the baseball. Blackhawk 11-5.
-Next time down the court, same thing as Sampson puts in another shot from the baseline. Zack was very effective offensively today off the dribble.

END OF FIRST QUARTER: BLACKHAWK 15 HOPEWELL 7

2ND QUARTER SUMMARY:
-Hopewell crashed the boards coming up with 2 rebounds and then eventually getting it out to Josh Gill, who drained a 3 from the top of the key. Blackhawk 19-10.
-Sampson beats his guy off the dribble and misses a runner but Leonora was there to clean things up for 2. Blackhawk 19-12.
-The end of the 2nd quarter really hurt Hopewell as they had it in single digits, but they got sloppy and weren’t able to break Blackhawk’s full-court press, which resulted in 4 layups.

HALFTIME: BLACKHAWK 30 HOPEWELL 14

3RD QUARTER SUMMARY:
*By far, this was Hopewell’s best quarter of the season.

-Nice offensive set as Vukovcan, in the middle of the key, finds Leonara down low for an easy 2.   Blackhawk 32-16
-Following a Blackhawk basket, the Vikings break the press as Leonara takes it coast to coast for a layup. Blackhawk 36-18.
-Next offensive possession, Leonara with a nice spin move in the lane for 2 more. Blackhawk 36-20.
-Hopewell’s defense leads to offense as Sampson comes up with a steal at halfcourt and then drives to the hoop for 2. Blackhawk 36-23.
-Crashing the boards, as Leonara misses down low, but Sampson grabs the rebound and puts it back in and gets fouled. Blackhawk 36-26.
*Hopewell is on an 8-0 run which cuts the Blackhawk lead from 18 down to 10.

END OF 3RD QUARTER: BLACKHAWK 38 HOPEWELL 26

4TH QUARTER SUMMARY:
*Hopewell cuts the lead down to 10 as Leonara with a physical move inside for 2 more. Today was a season-high of 10 points for Nykyeron, nice job big man. Blackhawk 38-28.
*Following that basket, Hopewell gets a steal from the press as Sampson intercepts the pass and takes it all the way in.  Blackhawk 38-30.
*With 2:40 left, Sampson gets 2 more driving in the lane. Blackhawk 40-32.

But that was as close as they got tonight.

FINAL SCORE: BLACKHAWK 47 HOPEWELL 34 

The Blue team has a couple days off before they’re back in action on Thursday as they’ll host Avonworth. Tipoff from the Junior High is at 3:30 PM.

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