Dave Drevna helps Western Reserve topple Columbiana in 68-48 victory
The senior forward scored 23 points in the Blue Devils' win.
By CHUCK HOUSTEAU
COLUMBIANA -- Western Reserve's Dave Drevna wasn't discouraged that he missed his first four shots against Columbiana Tuesday night.
"I just keep shooting," said the 6-foot-2 senior forward. "I try not to think about it. Sooner or later [the shots are] going to go in."
Drevna made his next six shots and 9-of-11 to finish with 23 points, as the Blue Devils defeated the Clippers 68-48 in an Inter Tri-County non-conference game.
Western Reserve (9-1, 5-1) came into the contest as one of the top teams in Tier 2 of the ITCL while Columbiana (7-4, 5-1) was one of the top teams in Tier 1.
The game was no contest after a close first quarter.
Drevna made his first shot at 1:40 of the first quarter after missing his first four 3-point shot attempts. The fifth 3-pointer found the bottom of the net and gave the Blue Devils an 8-7 lead at the end of the first quarter.
The Clippers came out in a 1-3-1 zone defense that seemed to confuse Reserve at first but once they figured it out there was no stopping the Blue Devils.
Western Reserve went on to make their next 23-of-38 shots in the final three quarters to roll to the 20-point victory.
"I was glad that we didn't hit too many jump shots in the first quarter because I didn't want the kids to fall in love with it," said Western Reserve coach Steve Miller. "We have so many other ways we can score and we started to do that after the early shots didn't fall."
The Blue Devils got a balanced effort offensively as John Porterfield scored 11 points and Jerod Barker added 10 from long range.
The Devils also attacked the basket with their definite height advantage over Columbiana and got eight points each from center Chris Tofilski and Chris Truitt.
Tofilski also grabbed nine rebounds as the taller Blue Devils outrebounded Columbiana, 36-31.
"We started to attack the basket after the first quarter and we were able to get a lot of easy baskets," Miller said.
Columbiana fell behind after scoring just seven points in the second quarter and trailed by 16 points at the half, 30-14.
The Clippers tried to get back in the game with a rally at the start of the third quarter but it wasn't enough.
Columbiana started the period on a 10-3 run to cut the lead to 33-24 but the Devils came right back to finish the quarter on a 12-5 run to put the game away.
Columbiana got 12 points each from Joe Blinsky and Josh Weikert.
Miller said that this game would go along way in helping the Blue Devils in their game Friday against Wellsville and for the rest of their conference season.
"This game was moved from the beginning of the year because both teams went so far into the football playoffs," Miller said. "This game will help us because Wellsville plays a good transition game like Columbiana and we were able to defend it pretty well."