Blue Devils fall short in first round of PIAAs


Phoebe Potter

The starters exit late in the game against Quaker Valley.

Christina Kowalski, Sports/Social Media Editor

The Blue Devils were putting up shots in the first round of the PIAA playoffs, but none of them were falling in their favor as Quaker Valley bested them 66-40.

In warm-ups both Bellwood-Antis and Quaker Valley were making almost every shot, but when it came to game time the Quakers were the ones draining the shots.

In the first quarter the Blue Devils kept the game close as the Quakers on outscored them 22-19.

“We were lucky to keep the game that close,” said Noah D’Angelo. “They dominated the whole first quarter.  We were just lucky to make the shots we did.”

In the first half B-A tried to contain Quaker Valley’s Coletrane Washington, but was unsuccessful as he nailed four three point shots. For the remainder of the game Washington was face-guarded which held him to his 12 points.

In the second quarter Bellwood started to lose the momentum that has been helping them win games all year.

B-A only scored five points to Quaker Valley’s 14 in the second quarter as Bellwood went into the half trailing 36-24.

Head Coach Brent Gerwert said, “We played hard, but their defense forced us into doing some uncharacteristic things and made us take a lot of contested shots.”

Bellwood came out after halftime hoping to have a big second half, but by that time their momentum was gone.

“We didn’t hit our first shot like we were hoping and they got a bucket right away,” said Nathan Davis. “They were able to play their stall game most of the second half.”

In the second half, after the Quakers had a healthy lead, point guard Amos Luptak started to play a stalling game that wasted valuable time that the Blue Devils needed. Luptak dribbled circles around the Blue Devil defense, tiring out key players who were forced to guard him.  With the exception of Jarrett Taneyhill, the entire B-A squad took turns guarding Luptak, but none were successful.  Luptak finished the game with 21 points.

In the third quarter B-A was only outscored 10-7 but by that time it was too late. Heading into the final quarter Quaker Valley lead 46-31 and they continued to pull away in the fourth.  Bellwood was outscored 20-9 in the final quarter as the Blue Devils went on to lose their final game 66-40.

“Quaker Valley was a very good team and did what they needed to do to win.  i thought going into the  game that we could play with them, but as the game unfolded, it was clear they were the better team,” added Coach Gerwert.

Nathan Davis was the leading scorer for Bellwood-Antis with 17 points, but 14 of those points came in the first half. Davis was followed by Trent Walker with 9, who drained two three point shots after Quaker Valley took their starters out, and Jake Burch and Nevin wood with 3.

The Blue Devils, who are saying goodbye to three seniors, finished out their 2015-2016 season 24-3. Quaker Valley is currently 21-6 and will play Greensburg Central Catholic in the next round of playoffs.