Fast start lifts Wolves over Smethport Hubbers 62-50

Photo by Larry Smith — Andrew Jekielek grabs a loose ball and heads up the court for a layup against Smethport's Kameron Rounsville on Saturday.Photo by Larry Smith — Following a big rebound, Kane's Alex Rezzelle battles to get a shot off between Smethport's Eric Szarowicz and Brandon Peterson (#22).
Larry Smith
Staff Writer

From the opening tip on Saturday afternoon, the Kane Wolves basketball team was off and running. The Wolves jumped out to a big lead, hitting several threes and played strong defense early. The visiting Smethport Hubbers made a second-half charge but it was not enough as Kane picked up their third win of the year, 62-50.
As a team, the Wolves drained nine three-pointers. The Hubs were forced to foul late and Kane made it hurt, hitting nine of 10 from the line in the fourth quarter, 13-17 (76 percent) in the game. Chad Greville put the finishing touches on a good week leading Kane with 21 points including four threes. Austin Pierson drilled two from three-point land and finished with ten points. Alex Rezzelle and Zuke Smith controlled the lane for the Wolves, ripping down rebounds and scoring nine each. 
Head Coach Caleb Landmesser was pleased with the Wolves first half shooting led by Greville.
"We did well," said Landmesser. "We want to generate open looks. If we can, percentage wise we have the shooters and we will knock them down. If we don't spread the ball around and have our spacing be what it's supposed to be, we will end up taking contested shots and that's not what we want. The first half was good."
The Kane coach also praised the play of his big men inside. "They (Smith and Rezzelle) are so gifted inside," stated Landmesser. "Both of them can step out and make shots also. They have been doing a good job developing chemistry, screening for each other and also finding men to box out. They did their thing. It was nice to see."
The Smethport Hubbers battled back from a 32-20 halftime deficit and cut the lead to four in the second half. Caleb Lutz scored 10 points in the last two quarters and led the Hubs with 14 for the game. Eric Szarowicz added 11 and Brandon Peterson finished with nine. 
The Wolves jumped out to a 5-2 lead following a three from Greville and a layup from Rezzelle. Lutz cut the lead to 5-2 with a jump shot. Kane's defense took control and held the Hubs scoreless over the next six plus minutes. Threes from Carson Whiteman and Brennan Smith gave the Wolves a 14-2 lead before Ian Woodruff stopped the Hubs scoreless drought with a free throw. A late shot from Pierson put the Wolves ahead 16-5 at the end of one. 
Smethport's Peterson caught fire in the second quarter scoring nine points. Greville answered with nine of his own for the Wolves. Zuke Smith added four and Pierson drained a three. Kane outscored the Hubs 16-15 and took a 32-20 lead into the half. 
The Hubs came out firing in the third quarter and outscored Kane 18-14. Smethport used a 9-0 run midway through the quarter to cut the lead to 39-35 following a three from Lutz. Smethport capitalized on several second-chance opportunities. 
"We did a very poor job of when you make contact for rebounding not actually driving our guys back," said Landmesser. "We were trying to jump up for 50-50 balls rather than establishing position. We have to work on that and do better. They had some lapses but in the end, we escaped with the victory."
Lutz added six for the Hubs and Szarowicz five. For Kane, Greville scored five, Rezzelle four and Brennan Smith hit another key three-pointer to put Kane back up by eight, 46-38 at the end of three. 
With the Wolves pulling away in the fourth, the Hubs were forced to foul. Kane was shooting in the bonus and hit nine of 10 to seal the deal and win 62-50. Zuke Smith hit 3-4 from the line. Whiteman, Pierson, and Greville were all a perfect 2-2 from the line late in the fourth. 

For full article, check the Jan. 7, 2019 printed or e-edition of The Kane Republican