At halftime Friday night, Charleston boys basketball coach Brad Oakley made some adjustments.
Casey-Westfield’s Noah Livingston had just scored 19 points in the first half.
So he assigned Lane Harrell to defend the 6-foot-1, 185 pound guard to begin the second half, later sharing duties with teammate Sam Schuette in a box-and-one, a hybrid defense that employs elements of both man-to-man and zone.
The two players limited Livingston, who had scored all but eight of the Warriors’ first-half points, to nine points the rest of the game, which enabled Charleston to post a 58-52 victory in the Cumberland Thanksgiving Tournament.
The Trojans (2-0) advance to play in Saturday night’s championship final at Waldrip Gymnasium against Dieterich, a 54-50 overtime winner over Okaw Valley. Tip off is 6 p.m.
“Those guys really took him (Livingston) out of the game,” Oakley said. “They made him work for everything that he got in the second half. The kids did a great job talking and communicating in the box-and-one.”
Charleston was able to extend its lead from three to nine in the third quarter thanks to the defensive shift – and to a 9-0 run midway through the period that gave the Trojans a 52-39 lead.
Caleb Hurst scored a team-high 15 points for Charleston while teammate Isaac Miller contributed 13.
“We moved the ball really well, especially in the first three quarters,” Oakley said. “Isaac and Caleb carried us in the first three quarters in scoring and in creating for others.”
Charleston 58, Casey Westfield 52
Hurst 7 1-3 15, Harrell 2 1-3 6, Bell 4 0-0 10, Miller 5 2-2 13, Applegate 0 0-0 0, Braun 0 0-1 0, Schuette 0 2-2- 2, Bickford 6 0-2 12. Totals 24 6-11 58.
3-pointers: Bell 2, Harrell 1, Miller 1.