Zach Jenkinks scored a game-high 17 points while Richie Dunham added 13 of his own as Methacton erased a five-point deficit in the fourth quarter to overcome Souderton in a non-league contest on Wednesday night.
Although the Indians appeared to be in control through three periods, the Warriors never went away and used their size, long-range shooting and basket-attacking prowess to take a late lead and didn't look back.
"I really think this was a character-building win for us,' Methacton coach Jeff Derstein said. "We knew Souderton was a really good team coming in, we knew it would be a battle. To get down and to fight back like we did makes me really proud of the guys.'
The first half was a close affair, as Souderton went into halftime with a two point lead. However Dunham did his best to keep his team in the game.
The Indians were shooting the ball considerably well and were moving the ball inside effectively in the opening 16 minutes, forcing Methacton to make adjustments. Evan Slone and Tim Markow had eight and seven points, respectively to lead the Indians. Slone finished the game with 13 points.
While the Warriors matched their opponents in the first quarter, they went ice cold in the second. Souderton continued to play well, but could not open up a big lead thanks to Dunham, who scored all 11 of Methacton's points in the period including three 3-pointers.
"Our team played well, but our defense was not as good as it should have been,' Dunham said. "This win is big for us because if we get into another big game in states or the PAC-10, we'll be ready. It felt good to help the team win.'
Both teams ramped up the defense after halftime, resulting in a single-digit scoring quarter for both sides. However, after scoring eight points in the first quarter, Jenkins hit two big 3-pointers in the third, and had nine of his game-high 17 points in the second half, leading the Warriors into the final period down by only three points.
"I knew that they wouldn't let us get away, even when we had a little bit of a lead,' Souderton coach Pete Chimera said. "They were going to be there in the end. It usually comes down to the wire between us. I thought we took good shots in the second half, some just didn't go down for us.'
Unfortunately for the Indians, Methacton found its scoring rhythm in the fourth quarter. Sean Mann, who previously had two points on free throws, hit a huge 3-pointer with four minutes remaining to tie the game '' one of many lead shifts. The Warriors defense also stepped up again, allowing just two buckets in the final eight minutes. The Indians did hit their shots from the charity stripe, however, resulting in a close game all the way until the end.
With time expiring quickly, Souderton's Steve Shaffer drove to the hoop, scored and appeared to be fouled in the process with 4.1 seconds remaining, but the official call on the floor was a charge, negating the basket and allowing Methacton to escape with the victory.
"They made some really good shots at the end,' Chimera said of the Warriors. "This one stings a little bit, though. I think we grow because of this. We are an inexperienced team, so games like this are important.'
"Souderton's defense was really tough, but we were patient offensively and found our shots,' Derstein said. "I'm proud of this win. I think it's big because I expect to be in a lot of tight games this year because our league is good. To get experience and find a way to win like this is great for our guys.'
Methacton: Jenkins 7 1-3 17, Dunham 4 2-2 13, Mann 2 2-2 7, Ruhl 1 0-0 2, Ardman 2 1-2 5, Alderfer 1 1-1 3, Totals 17 7-10 47.
Souderton: Slone 6 1-2 13, Knight 3 0-0 7, Saffer 1 2-2 4, Markow 4 0-0 10, Simsick 1 0-0 2, Bernhart 3 3-5 9, Totals 19 6-9 45.
Methacton 13 11 8 15 - 47
Souderton 16 10 9 10 - 45
3-point goals: Dunham 3, Jenkins 2, Markow 2, Mann, Knight