Ritter and Youngs propel Raiders to dominating win

South Range improves to 2-0 on the season with big win

South Range Raiders High School Basketball - Canfield, OH

CANFIELD, Ohio (WKBN) – Some nights everything goes your way. Other nights, nothing goes your way. On Tuesday night at South Range everything went the way of the Raiders, but not so much for the Lisbon Blue Devils.

The result was a resounding 69-36 win by the Raiders to improve to 2-0 on the season. The Devils drop to 2-1.

The Raiders presure defense and quick transition offense propelled them to a 23-9 first quarter advantage and a commanding 42-17 halftime lead. The Devils comitted 15 turnovers in the first half while the Raiders hit 19 of 29 shots from the floor, including many uncontessted layups on long full court passes behind the Devils defense.

“We just came out with a great game plan with the press. We came right at them, went right down their thoarts and just put the ball in the bucket,” Raiders senior Dan Ritter said. “We knew if we could get out quick, get it and go, we knew we could get some easy points.”

“First, they (Lisbon) are a good transition team. You just didn’t see it tonight,” Raiders coach John Cullen remarked. “We tried to take that away, and we tried to take Justin (Sweeney) away, because he is such a really good player. We figured if we do those two things that would really give us an advantage. Because we have a little more experience than they do.”

“It was a situation as I told the kids, if you coach long enough you sometimes get that vibe that your team is just not there tonight. We didn’t seem focused, we didn’t really have a good warm up, and there wasn’t much intensity. There is no excuse for that. We’re a young basketball team and we should be excited to play every game,” Blue Devils coach Chris Huckshold explained.

The Raiders would continue to build on their 25-point halftime lead as they would push their advantage to 39 points at the 2:35 mark of the third quarter when Hunter Solvesky hit a shot. Lisbon would close the period with a 6-3 run to make it 61-25 at the end of the quarter.

The Blue Devils would keep fighting to the end as they outscored the Raiders 11-8 in the final quarter to make the final a 33 point margin.

“This game means a lot,” Ritter said of the victory. Because we started real slow against Lowellville (last Friday), so we all said that we need to pick it up. We need to start right now. So yeah this game meant a lot.”

Dan Ritter and Brandon Youngs both scored 18 points a piece to pace the Raiders while Matt Brooks came off the bench to lead them in rebounds with 5. Ritter, Taymer Graham, and Jaxon Anderson all added 4 rebounds.

“Dan knows pretty much game in and game out he is our rock,” Cullen said. “He can score inside, he can score outside. He rebounds the ball real well. He kind of controls the inside. Brandon is kind of a wildcard. When we get on the fast break he is really fast. He finishes really well. Those two guys are going to get you points.”

Branson Brownfield came off the Blue Devils bench to lead them in the scoring column with 10 points. He also led them with 5 rebounds on the night.

“Last Friday night we took the floor and we had five new starters (from last year). Everybody had different roles. I think we are going to be one of these teaams that we are going to be inconsistent. We’re young, we got some guys out there that haven’t played a lot of minutes. So we are going to get better night by night. There might be some ugly nights and there are going to be some good nights,” Huckshold concluded.

Both teams return to action Friday night as Lisbon travels to East Palestine while the Raiders travel to Western Reserve.

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