Senath-Hornersville boys basketball team outlasts Holcomb 77-42

Wednesday, December 6, 2017
Photo by Dustin Ward, staff
Senath-Hornersville’s Diego Fernandez is guarded near the rim by Holcomb’s Ty Neldon in a varsity boys basketball game Tuesday night at Senath-Hornersville High School.

SENATH, Mo. - Senath-Hornersville varsity boys basketball coach Corbin Clark turned the focus away from offense entering Tuesday night’s home opener against the Holcomb Hornets.

“We knew tonight would be about defense and rebounding,” Clark said. “Coach Hahn does a good job at Holcomb and we are good friends. I have so much respect for the job he does for with his kids and how he gets them to play so hard. We knew it was going to be physical and a big key for us was going to be to match their physicality so we set a defensive goal to hold them under 45 points. At the end of the night we were able to do that, just barely.”

The Lions looked well on its way to holding Holcomb to less than 45 points as it enjoyed a 36-15 lead by halftime. Holcomb made things interesting in the second half as it cut a 42-18 deficit with 5:30 left in the third period to 52-41 with 5:33 left in regulation.

But Senath-Hornersville followed with 25-1 run in the final five minutes of the fourth period as it beat Holcomb 77-42.

“We didn’t worry a whole lot about offense tonight in terms of half-court execution,” Clark said. “We were wanting to get defensive stops and get it out in transition to Diego and Orlando.”

Holcomb coach Chris Hahn felt a change in defense was also key to his team’s second-half spurt. The Hornets called a timeout after falling behind 42-18 with 5:30 left in the third period. After the timeout, Holcomb enjoyed a 23-10 run as it extended its defense beyond half court.

“I made the mistake of sitting back on defense too long,” Hahn said. “I felt like our energy and passion wasn’t there in a half-court defense. We finally got away from that. These kids are used to pressing and going up and down. I’m glad we were able to fight back in the second half. We just ran into foul trouble once we got back in it.”

The Hornets found itself in serious foul trouble after it narrowed the margin near single digits. Holcomb guard Gabe Roso fouled out with 1:37 left in the third quarter, guard Austin Barnes fouled out with 3:31 left in the fourth quarter and center Noah Hobbs played with four fouls the final six minutes of regulation.

“I’m going to start playing some younger guys up so we will have more bodies,” Hahn said. “I really think we can press the majority of the time. We just have to learned how to play fast, but still execute.”

Five Senath-Hornersville players scored in double digits. Diego Fernandez led the way for the Lions with 22 points. Orlando Coronado added 18 points, Joel Marroquin recorded 13 points. Jace King tallied 12 points and Joaquin Maldonado recorded 10 points.

Marroquin hit three of the Lions’ five treys.

“It’s been really fun coaching these guys the first couple weeks,” Clark said. “Diego obviously leads us in scoring most nights, but this is the second night we’ve had all five guys score in double figures. What I love about this team is I don’t think we have any one guy you can just play off of. We’ve got five guys that can put it in the hole in their own respective ways. If we can play defense and rebound for four full quarters I think we’ve got enough offensive balance to play with some people.”

Hobbs, who was the only player to record a field goal for the Hornets in the first 12 minutes, finished with a game-high 23 points. He recorded a team-high nine 2-pointers and made five of 12 free throws.

Four other Holcomb players hit one 3-pointer each.

“We are still looking for guys to step up,” Hahn said. “I think all of our seniors can be offensive leaders. They’ve just got to get some confidence and learn to be aggressive.”

Both squads begin regular season conference play Friday.

Holcomb (0-3) plays its home opener against traditional Tri-County Conference talent Cooter.

“It will be tough,” Hahn said. “Coach Mathis does a good job getting his kids ready to play. I think Cooter is one of the dark horses to win the conference this year. I just hope we show up ready to play. I think we have a chance against any team we play as long as we show up with the right mentality.”

Senath-Hornersville, now 3-1, hosts defending Bootheel Conference champion Caruthersville Friday.

“If you would have told me we would have been sitting here at 3-1 with our one loss to a really good Caruthersville team I would have definitely taken it,” Clark said. “I’ve been super proud of our guys. They really bought in to coming in a lot this summer and coming in before school. They’ve been able to get some early returns on that and it has been fun to watch.

“Hopefully, we can come out and just get after it against Caruthersville and we will see what happens,” Clark added.

Senath-Hornersville 77, Holcomb 42

HHS 8 7 19 8 - 42

SHS 20 16 14 27 - 77

HOLCOMB (42) - Austin Barnes 3, Ty Neldon 5, Gabe Roso 8, Korbin Tucker 3, Noah Hobbs 23. FG 15, FT 8/20, F 23. (3-pointers: Barnes 1, Neldon 1, Roso 1, Tucker 1; Fouled out: Barnes, Roso).

SENATH-HORNERSVILLE (77) - Jace King 12, Diego Fernandez 22, Joaquin Maldonado 10, Joel Marroquin 13, Orlando Coronado 18. Lopez 2. FG 28, FT 16/29, F 18. (3-pointers: Marroquin 3, Coronado 1, Fernandez 1; Fouled out: None).

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