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Youth being served

Knoch’s young lineup handles QV, 69-44

JEFFERSON TWP — Four sophomores and a junior.

Knoch’s starting lineup in Monday’s boys basketball game against Quaker Valley may have seemed rather green, but the young Knights brought a lot of experience to the floor.

Teegan Finucan draws a foul against a Quaker Valley defender
Teegan Finucan draws a foul against a Quaker Valley defender during Monday’s game at Knoch High School. The Knights won, 69-44. Brandon Croney/ Special to The Eagle. 12/5/23

Derek Lang, Jackson Bauman, Teegan Finucan, Kaden Spencer and Zane Pacek were all part of Knoch’s youth movement last season as the Knights struggled to consistently win games.

Jackson Bauman of Knoch goes between the Quaker Valley defenders
Jackson Bauman (with ball) of Knoch goes between the Quaker Valley defenders for a lay up during the first quarter of their home game Tuesday night. Brandon Croney/Special to The Eagle. 12/5/23

Now they’re back, better and more seasoned and the latest evidence of that came in the form of a 69-44 win at home over the Quakers.

“All that playing time they got last year, we saw the effects of it over the summer,” said Knoch coach Alan Bauman. “These young guys were part of a lot of closes losses last year and they wanted to turn those around.”

Vincent DeFelice shoots a three during their home game
Vincent DeFelice shoots a three during their home game Tuesday night vs Quaker Valley. Brandon Croney/ Special to The Eagle. 12/5/23

Last year, the Knights lost to the Quakers by five points, part of a streak of six straight losses for the Knights to begin the season.

“We feel more mature than we actually are out there,” said Lang, who led the victory with 21 points, including four treys. “We worked through a couple of rough patches tonight and found a way to win.”

Jackson Bauman hits a jumper over Quaker Valleys Ben Minard
Jackson Bauman (3) hits a jumper over Quaker Valleys Ben Minard (15) during their home game Tuesday night. Brandon Croney/Special to The Eagle. 12/5/23

Most of the rough spots belonged to Quaker Valley (2-1). Trailing 29-24 at halftime, the Quakers tied the game early in the third quarter on a basket from Joe Coyle and a trey from Sam Chapman. But Pacek, a 7-foot center, scored inside to put the Knights (2-0) up for good.

Teegan Finucan steals the ball and drives down for the lay up
Teegan Finucan steals the ball and drives down for the lay up during their home game Tuesday night vs Quaker Valley. Brandon Croney/ Special to The Eagle. 12/5/23

It was Pacek’s second basket of the night. The first came seconds into the game.

“They were trying to clog the lane with Zane,” said Coach Bauman. “We started hitting our outside shots. That’s a decision teams are going to have to make. What do they want to try and take away, our inside or outside game.”

Lang, Vincent DeFelice and Zarian Finucan all drained treys in the second half of the third period and Teegan Finucan completed a conventional 3-point play to help push Knoch’s lead to 51-38 by the end of the period.

Derek Lang of Knoch collects the offensive rebound and passes the ball out
Derek Lang (2) of Knoch collects the offensive rebound and passes the ball out to keep the play alive during the second half of their home game Tuesday night vs Quaker Valley. Brandon Croney/ Special to The Eagle. 12/5/23

The Quakers’ bid at a comeback slipped away when they made just two of their first 10 field goal attempts in the fourth quarter.

Coyle paced the Quakers with 17 points.

Jackson Bauman scored 13 for Knoch, Teegan Finucan added 10.

“Three guys in double figures and two more scoring eight (Kaden Spencer and DeFelice). That’s what we’re hoping for every game,” said Coach Bauman. “Our practices are so competitive. We’re just looking to get better every day.”

QUAKER VALLEY 44

Zach Washington 3 7-8 15, Dom Cox-Giles 0 1-2 1, Joe Coyle 7 2-4 17, Dana Kromah 3 1-3 7, Sam Chapman 1 0-0 3, Kolton Howe 0 1-2 1, Reese Fatur 0 0-0 0, Sam Kretata 0 0-0 0. Totals: 14 12-19 44.

KNOCH 69

Derek Lang 8 1-1 21, Jackson Bauman 4 4-6 13, Teegan Finucan 3 3-3 10, Kaden Spencer 4 0-0 8, Zane Pacek 2 0-0 4, Zarian Finucan 2 0-0 5, Vincent DeFelice 3 0-0 8, Brody Bauman 0 0-0 0. Totals: 26 8-10 69.

Quaker Valley 10 14 14 6 — 44

Knoch 13 16 22 18 — 69

3-point goals: Quaker Valley 4 (Washington 2, Coyle, Chapman); Knoch 9 (Lang 4, DeFelice 2, Z.Finucan, T.Finucan, J. Bauman).

Saturday: Knoch vs. Grove City at New Castle H.S.

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