MILTON-FREEWATER - The DeSales boys basketball team stormed into the Mac-Hi Pioneer gym and took a varsity basketball game by the score of 41-35, leading throughout the game.
"It was our first win and a road win," DeSales coach Allyn Griffin said. "But they're all important. Mac-Hi fought hard and they are a pretty decent team. We've got some things to work on, but we can't take anything away from them. They played hard and so did we."
The Pioneers turned the ball over 17 times and had nine team steals.
The Irish turned the ball over 14 times and had seven team steals.
DeSales forward Nick Wales scored on a put-back to start, and Mac-Hi's Dylan Shuler drove to the hoop for 2 to tie it.
Travis Haen finished on a fastbreak bucket for the Irish to make it 4-2 with six minutes remaining in the first quarter. Wales drove to the hoop for a layin to make it 6-2.
Next, Jeremy Ley of Mac-Hi connected on a 3-pointer to put the score at 6-5 Irish, with five minutes remaining in the first period.
From there, the Irish went on a 10-1 run to close the first quarter.
Wales scored inside on an inbounds play and Reilly Roach of the Irish rebounded and scored inside the key.
Next Paul Elmenhurst scored on a fastbreak hoop, Roach scored a layup and Luke Fazzari finished on the fastbreak to make the score 16-6 Irish at the end of the first quarter.
"We stress fastbreak points and put-backs," Griffin said. "We want to hustle and do those things well. We did them well tonight, but fatigue played its role in our overall activity."
The Irish went ice cold in the second quarter, scoring just two points as Mac-Hi crept back into the game with five points to cut the lead to seven at the half.
The third-quarter points total was knotted at 17 points apiece for each team, and the seven-point difference went into the start of the fourth quarter.
Trailing 36-28 early in the fourth, the Pioneers went on a run started by a 3-pointer by Ricky Sandoval and two free throws by Derek Richwine to cut the lead to just three points.
The Pioneers could get no closer.
The Irish did leave the door open for the Pioneers at the end, making only 2-of-11 free throws late in the final period.
"We're going to have to get the point where if teams are going to foul, then we're going to make our free throws at the end, and we didn't do that tonight," Griffin said. "We shot very poorly from the line tonight."
The Pioneers did little in the way of scoring in the fourth to catch all the way up.
"Our turnovers eventually caught up with us in the end," Mac-Hi coach Curtis Carlson said. "And we've got to make baskets, too. The first two quarters, we score six and five points. Then, in the third quarter we score 17 points. If we had double digit scoring in every quarter, we probably would have won this game. We also got a little tired at the end and started letting them outrebound us.
"Missing shots, rebounds and turnovers usually make or break a game and they did that tonight," he said.
The Pioneers were outrebounded 33-22.
DeSales 41, Mac-Hi 35
DESALES (41) - Cox 2 0-0 4, Wales 5 1-4 11, Leahy 2 0-1 4, Fazzari 1 0-0 2, Roach 2 0-3 4, Galloway 2 0-0 4, Elmenhurst 2 0-0 5, Cordeiro 3 1-2 8, Martinez 0 0-2 0. Totals 19 2-12 41.
MAC-HI (35) - Shuler 1 0-0 2, Richwine 0 2-3 2, Ortiz 2 0-0 6, Ley 4 0-0 11, Flores 1 0-0 2, Williams 1 1-2 3, Hernandez 1 0-0 2, Sandoval 3 0-0 7. Totals 12 3-5 35.
DeSales 16 2 17 6 - 41
Mac-Hi 6 5 17 7 - 35
3-point goals - Mac 6 (Ortiz 2, Ley 3, Sandoval), DeS 1 (Elmenhurst). Total Fouls - Mac-Hi 13, DeSales 7. Fouled out - none. Technical fouls - none. Rebounds - DeSales 33 (Wales 7), Mac-Hi 22 (Richwine 11). Turnovers - Mac-Hi 17, DeSales 14.