Prescott scores 15 points in Stellar League victory
Tyler Prescott walked to the foul line with under a minute to play as Emmaus held a comfortable lead during last Tuesday night's summer league game against Bangor.
Despite already holding a 10-point edge, Prescott became a bit upset with himself after missing both free throws. After a Hornet rebound on the second miss, Prescott found the ball in his hands once again. This time, after continuing his aggressive play with a drive to the hoop, something he has made an effort to improve during the summer, he calmly knocked down his final two points in the Hornets' 59-47 win at Allen High School's Sewards Gymnasium.
"I don't really try to score a lot, but I try to keep it where I stay confident," Prescott said, "because when I start missing a lot of shots, I lose confidence, too. I just try to keep it where I'm steady. I take good shots and I'm confident throughout the game."
Emmaus is 3-1 through the first two weeks of the Stellar Summer Basketball League season, with wins also coming against Freedom and Bethlehem Catholic.
The Hornets didn't graduate many seniors from last year's team, but the ones they did certainly leave a void in the scoring department. Nate Feiertag and Joey Nicolini, two of the team's top scorers in the winter, won't be back next year. Head coach Steve Yoder understands that not only will Prescott be asked to do more scoring, but also to help with the younger classmen.
"I try to score more, and not only for myself, [but] I help the younger kids get a little confident and play stronger," Prescott said. "Even the [Kachelries] twins are still a little rocky with confidence, so I try to score and dime a little bit."
"Tyler has been shooting lights out," Yoder said. "He's a senior. It's amazing that the seniors know what we want. We're counting on him to help speed up the learning curve with these young kids."
A quick guard on both sides of the court, Prescott is focused on improving his defensive game just as much as his offensive talents. Yoder and his staff also understand the importance defense will play for this team moving forward.
"We just had an open gym before our game tonight to re-emphasize being a better defensive team," Yoder said. "We know that we have a lot of pieces coming back, and we're going to be pretty strong offensively."
"We're trying to focus a lot more on defense than offense," Prescott said. "We know that we have scorers on the court and off, but we have to bring it together as a defense if we want to make a run at anything in the winter."
The Hornets' roster - besides Feiertag and Nicolini-will be relatively the same next year. Along with Prescott, Claude Bradshaw will be one of the other seniors laying the groundwork for a squad consisting of many underclassmen.
Despite it's youth, Yoder has a deep, talented roster. It includes David Kachelries, Matt Kachelries, Joey Polczynski and Brandon Rapose, just to name a few that saw varsity time last year. And he knows that depth will provide plenty of great competition at all positions.
"I just talked to the kids tonight after the game," Yoder said. "I said, 'One of the neat things for us as a coaching staff is that some of you guys that fancy yourselves as starters better look over your shoulder because our bench is deep.'"
Kevin Wambold, Micaiah Fraction, Jacob Scarnulis, Cameron Widdoss and Jake Feiertag are just a few of the names Yoder expects to provide quality varsity time as well
A 22-21 lead for the Hornets late in the first half quickly ballooned to double digits by the time intermission hit. As part of a 10-0 run to end the half, Prescott hit a midrange jumper and David Kachelries' steal and layup sent the Hornets into halftime with all of the momentum.
When the second half began, the Hornets quickly grew their lead to 40-27 and led by as many as 15 late in the game.
The third week of the season opens with Emmaus facing Quakertown on Tuesday. Results from that game were not available at time of press. The Hornets are scheduled to face Parkland on Thursday at Cedar Beach's Court 1 at 6:15 p.m.