Darius Hall '11 looks to inbound in the closing minutes of the Aces' victory on Saturday
Fifteen seconds into the Aces’ game against Coatesville, senior Harley Williamson threaded a beautiful backdoor pass to Greg Robbins that was converted into an authoritative one-handed dunk. It was a statement play that set the tone for the rest of the contest. The Aces dispatched a talented Red Raiders team with punishing precision and cruised to a 59-37 win in front of 1300 fans at Villanova and a live, state-wide PCN television audience. With the victory, the Aces move to 16-4 on the season while Coatesville falls to 15-5.
Coming off a clunky 12-point victory against Ridley, Lower Merion knew that a win against Coatesville would help solidify a strong late season push. The Red Raiders, a dangerous Ches-Mont team who feature an imposing front line and athletic guards, had battled Chester and Glen Mills to the wire in recent weeks. The LM faithful expected a tight game; instead, the Aces held Coatesville to their lowest point output of the season and gave the Red Raiders their largest margin of defeat.
Key to the game was the Aces’ ability to control tempo. When Lower Merion wanted to run and get out on the fastbreak, they did. When they wanted to slow the game down and play half-court basketball, they did. The Aces outscored Coatesville in each quarter, methodically building a double-figure lead by the third frame, and extending the margin to 20 points in the fourth.
Robbins, who started the game with the slam, put in a fantastic performance and earned Player of the Game Honors. (The game was part of the two-day Prime Time Shootout event.) Recording 21 points while playing solid defense (2 blocks, including a blocked dunk attempt), he was the obvious choice for team MVP. Williamson had another strong outing, even after having to sit-out much of the third quarter due to foul trouble. The senior swingman registered 15 points, twelve rebounds and three blocked shots and found himself on the receiving end of a sparkling alley-oop pass from junior Oliver Cohen in the third quarter. Williamson punctuated the fourth with a drive through the lane that ended with a one-handed jam. Junior Alon Seltzer added 13 points and collected five rebounds in a solid effort. Sophomore Darius Hall notched his first career varsity basket. Cohen, sophomore Matt McKenna and junior Aaron Staley also scored for the Aces.
LM heads to Conestoga on Monday night for a key Central League match-up. Tip-off is 7:30 PM.
Lower Merion: 13 14 16 16 – 59
Coatesville: 8 11 10 8 – 37
LM: Greg Robbins 21, Harley Williamson 15, Alon Seltzer 13, Matt McKenna 4, Aaron Staley 2, Oliver Cohen 2, Darius Hall 2.
CV: Patrick Brewer 9, Jahmal Slater 8, Blair Martinez 8, Stephenell Gray 3, Marcus Blakely 2, Kriston Miller 2, Kenneth Thompson 2, Langston Womack 2, Ray Johnson 1.