by Gary Andrews
After a disappointing weekend at the Wabash County basketball tourney, the Manchester Squires basketball team went on the road one week later and made some serious noise. The Squires paid a visit to Huntington Saturday and with 8 of the 9 players, who saw the floor scoring, knocked off the Vikings 66-60.
A strong defensive first half by the Squires was key in the win, as Manchester’s balanced attack took advantage. The Squires held Huntington to just 4 points in the first quarter while they built a 6-point lead. Manchester got buckets from Chase Fierstos and Lucas Schilling, while Clayton Petrie knocked home a three pointer and three free throws to lead 10-4 after one.
Knowing the Vikings could strike at any time, the Squires offense was up for the task. Manchester would win the quarter 16-14, hitting five buckets in which three were from behind the arch. Chase Fierstos, Clayton Petrie and Micah McDaniel would all find the range behind the arch, while Phoenix Goad and Fierstos would hit two pointers. Fierstos would lead the Squire charge in the quarter with 6 points as Manchester led 26-18 at the half.
Huntington had shut down Squire sharp shooter Claudell Dickantone the entire first half, but the Squires made some halftime adjustments and Dickantone went off in the third. Manchester would feed Dickantone, who cashed in four times in the quarter, which included two buckets from behind the arch for 10 points. Clayton Petrie would drain his third three pointer of the game as Manchester won the quarter 15-12 and led 41-30 with one quarter to go.
The fourth quarter would be at a racehorse pace and get very physical as the Vikings were forced to foul to play catch up. Huntington put the Squires on the line 9 times in the quarter with the Squires going 12 of 17 from the charity stripe. Huntington would knock down 4 buckets from behind the arch in their catch-up attempt, out scoring Manchester 30-25, but the Squire lead was to much as Manchester knocked off Huntington 66-60.
Eight players got in to the scoring column for the Squires, led by Clayton Petrie with 19 points. Chase Fierstos added 17, Claudell Dickantone 14, Phoenix Goad 5, Braydon Sewell 3, Branden Scott 3, Micah McDaniel 3, Lucas Schilling 2.
"All nine players had significant contributions during big minutes. It was a total team effort on both sides of the ball. Much improved from a week ago. I'm very proud of the effort to improve everyday,” said Coach Thompson of his team.
The junior varsity fell to Huntington 44-23.