Boys basketball team wants to keep it rolling

Blue Devils hoping for third straight PIAA tournament berth

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Marissa Panasiti

Joe Padula (shooting) and Jarrett Taneyhill (34) are two key components returning for B-A this basketball season.

John Kost, Staff Writer

What’s at stake for the boys’ varsity basketball team this season?

Last year the team went 24-3 and was the District 6-AA champion,  with seniors Nathan Davis and Jake Burch leading the day.

Now that those two are graduated, what will the team do to score points and win games this season?

Last year sophomore Joe Padula was the runner-up in scoring to Davis with three-hundred and forty-six points, an average of 12.8 points per game. Outside the arc Trent Walker has the most points with 39 three-pointers made a year ago and averaged over 8 ppg. .

“We have plenty of players who can score. We don’t have one player to break down the defense and score,” said coach Gerwert.

The Blue Devils will need to pride themselves defensively because they won’t return to the same offensive firepower as last year. Tanneyhill led the team in blocks in 2016-2017 with 126.

They have a chance to do something that no other class has done, so that should be important to them.”

— Coach Gerwert

Who will step up as a leader?

Most of the juniors are back as confident seniors, like Jarrett Tanneyhill, Padula, Ethan McGee, and Devin Zeng. Aside from the seniors, the returning eleventh graders include: Trent Walker, Clay Engle, and Tanner Worthing.

The team will need strong leadership because it has big plans for this season. Coach Gerwert has said that they want to go to states in the PIAA tournament for the third time in a row. That’s never been done before at B-A.

“They have a chance to do something that no other class has done, so that should be important to them,” said Coach Gerwert.

Bellwood has a tough starting schedule starting with Tyrone on the road on Friday to start the season, followed by ICC play with Everett the following week.

Like last year, B-A will have a tough time within the ICC. Juniata Valley will be a strong competitor.

“I feel like any team in the league could beat us on any given night if we’re not prepared,” said Joe.