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Hibbler: Indians Boys ‘On the Rise’
Written by Bradley Schlegel, Staff Writer
2019-12-24

            Despite a pair of recent losses against two of the larger schools in the Pioneer Athletic Conference, Upper Perkiomen's boys basketball team is making progress,

Upper Perkiomen junior Hunter Flack drives to the bask-
et during a 75-36 loss to Methacton last week.

according to head coach Brandon Hibbler.  "Things are on the rise with this program," he said. "I'm happy to be here."

            Despite posting its first victory of the season against Pottsgrove in the middle of the month, the Indians struggled against a pair of Frontier Division opponents at home. Despite a strong start, they suffered a 75-36 loss to Methacton. Two days later, they lost 64-29 to Boyertown.

            The 51-45 victory over Pottsgrove earlier in the month provided a shot of confidence for the players, according to Flack. The team had an especially productive practice the following day, according to Hibbler.

            "We have to continue to grow and learn," the coach said. "We're getting better every day. There's no magic wand. Improvement is going to take time."

            As part of a varsity doubleheader on Dec. 19, the Warriors dominated the Tribe. They had four players score in double figures.

            "It's always tough taking on Methacton," Flack said.

            The Indians started fast, building a 9-8 lead on four points by Hunter Flack and Liam Boyle's 3-pointer. However, Methaction responded by reeling off 14 consecutive points. Eric Timko hit a pair of 3-pointers, and Brent Byrne added a basket and two assists to help the team open a 22–9 advantage early in the second quarter. Timko delivered 11 of his 17 points in the first quarter.

            According to Flack, Upper Perkiomen experienced early success pushing the ball. He said the Warriors overwhelmed them playing the same style.

            "They are better at it then we were," said Flack, a junior point guard who scored a team-high 11 points.

             At halftime, Methacton led 40-19. The team executed its offense with crisp passing and accurate shooting. It converted nine 3-pointers, including four in the first quarter. According to Hibbler, his team allowed 10 fast-break points.

           The coach said his team couldn't keep up with Methacton. He described the opposition as easily the top team in the conference.

            "There was nothing we could do," Hibbler said. "We did some good things early."

            Upper Perkiomen's offense shied away from the lane due to the presence of Jeff Woodard, the Warriors 6-foot-10 senior center. Woodward, a Colgate University commit who was limited to 13 points, registered six of his team's 10 blocks.

            "We didn't do a good job sharing the ball," Hibbler said. "It seemed like most possessions were one pass and shoot."

            Sean Boyle and Dustin Hurlbrink, a 6-foot-3 sophomore forward, each scored six points for the Tribe, who finished with eight scorers.

            Against the Bears, Flack scored a team-high 11 points and Drew Kupchak contributed nine points for the Indians, who trailed 29-21 at halftime. David Leh registered 10 points, while Aarick Salata and Tre Digugielmo each delivered eight.

            In the third quarter, Mason Marinello scored 10 of game-high 18 to help Boyertown pull away. Upper Perkiomen managed just five points in the quarter and eight overall in the second half.


 

 

 

 

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