FHC JV boys basketball escapes scare from rivals FHN

FHC JV boys basketball escapes scare from rivals FHN

Ali Czarnecki, Tyler George, Sports Reporters

With their undefeated record on the line, the Rangers of Forest Hills Central hung on in a hard fought 46-35 victory. After previously dominating Forest Hills Northern in their first meeting, the Rangers had a tougher task facing them a second time. Their struggles started on the perimeter, as they couldn’t knock down shots or avoid turnovers. Coming off a 39 point performance in the Rangers lopsided victory against the Wyoming Wolves, freshmen Jimmy Scholler was looking to keep things rolling. Early on, Jimmy’s struggles were evident as he couldn’t quite find his rhythm. Lanky sophomore Tate Hallock was active on the glass, but couldn’t find his touch around the rim. With their backcourt struggling, the Rangers found themselves down at the end of the first quarter, and were looking for answers. The answer was sophomore forward Jay Shields who provided a much needed spark off the bench.

“We had great physicality,” Jay said. “We really got a lot of guys going down low. We started rebounding and boxing out better. We were tougher than they were.”

Fellow forward Josh Wise had himself a day on the glass and was crucial on both ends of the court. Josh cleaned up the glass and finished well at the rim. Josh knows if they play their game and stick together then they’re a tough group to beat. After a rough first three quarters that’s exactly the mentality they came out with in the fourth.

“We just settled down, calmed each other down, and started to impose ourselves which was key in the comeback,” Josh said. “We did what we do best. We moved the ball and started taking good shots; that was a real game changer.”

Head coach James Telman knows his team has things to improve on but was happy with the way Jay and Josh fought throughout the night.

“When your outside game isn’t working, the only place you can go is inside,” Telman said. “We’re just fortunate enough to have the personnel that can get the ball inside, and so we utilized that. Jay and Josh fought for every possession and kept going at it.”

Telman has a special group who has improved to 14-0 with the win, and they can do it on both ends of the ball. Telman believes they won the game on one side of the ball tonight.

“I believe our comeback can be credited to sticking to our new game plan and playing team defense,”Telman said.

Playing against a rival like the Huskies can change the way you play, and it looked like the Rangers were rattled early on. With 6″2′ guys across the board, their length was too much in the 1-2-2 press, as they brought themselves back in it by forcing hard shots and turnovers. Jay was happy that they were able to squeak out a win after a hard fought battle against their foes. For him, competing against the Huskies means more than most games.

“It’s a lot different,” Jay said. “It feels way better when you win, because it’s a huge rivalry and always has been. It was tough, but it was a great win for us.”

There’s no arguing that this was an important game for the Rangers, as it kept them undefeated and on top of the league race. The FHC-FHN rivalry goes way back and FHC has remained on top in basketball in the last few years. Josh knows that if they can take care of business as usual, then this is just another game on the schedule.

“We play every game like it is a rivalry game,” Josh said. “We play with the same intensity every single time, so it’s just like every other game.”

The Rangers look to keep their streak alive as they travel to Northview to take on the Wildcats.