Raiders keep rolling

WGH takes sole possession of first with win over Canfield

Tribune Chronicle / Marc Weems
Warren G. Harding’s Terrion Jackson, left, dribbles inside while being defended by Canfield’s Ian McGraw, center, and Aydin Hanousek, right, during Saturday’s 54-38 Raiders victory in Warren.

Tribune Chronicle / Marc Weems Warren G. Harding’s Terrion Jackson, left, dribbles inside while being defended by Canfield’s Ian McGraw, center, and Aydin Hanousek, right, during Saturday’s 54-38 Raiders victory in Warren.

WARREN — Warren G. Harding took control early and put Canfield away late to earn another critical win in All-American Conference Red Tier action.

A fast start powered the Raiders to a 54-38 victory over Canfield, taking over sole possession of first place in the Red Tier. Harding has won four-straight games.

Right from the start, the Raiders (8-5, 7-1) took control of the game with a 10-0 run to start the game, holding the Cardinals scoreless through 4:21 in the first quarter. Canfield (9-5, 5-2) couldn’t stop the Raiders at all in the first quarter.

“We were just switching up our looks on them in hopes that we would make them think a little bit. We found out later in the game that man-to-man defense was the way to go,” Canfield coach Todd Muckleroy said. “They always shot the ball well against us. They do get out in transition but them getting out to a 10-0 lead hurt us.”

Harding led 17-7 after the first quarter. Dom McGhee led all with six points on two 3-pointers.

In the second quarter, Harding and Canfield traded buckets as the Raiders took a 27-19 halftime lead behind McGhee’s nine points. Zach Tinkey had eight points for the Cardinals.

“We are really good when we get out in transition. We sometimes sputter our wheels in the half-court. I though that in the first half, we didn’t get out on the break. We just made some shots,” Harding coach Andy Vlajkovich said. “Everybody’s offense looks good when you’re hitting shots. We play well with leads so I thought the start was important.”

Vlajkovich said that it is vital that they get a lead because he has a different team when they are up.

Canfield didn’t go away easily in the third quarter as it got to within four and eventually trailed, 34-29, after three quarters.

“During the course of a long game like that, it is always harder to battle back and expend that energy while saving some for the latter part of the game,” Muckleroy said. “I think that’s ultimately what happened. We just ran into a wall and couldn’t catch up.”

A big part of Harding’s game was the front court duo of Terrion Jackson and Delmar Moore. They combined for 23 points and most of Harding’s 22 rebounds.

“Coach V wanted us to start quickly and spread them out,” Jackson said. “Me and Delmar are long and can grab rebounds. We also can be good on defense because of our length.”

Jackson and Moore come in at 6-foot-5 and 6-6, respectively.

Canfield now gets Boardman on Tuesday, while Harding goes to play Austintown Fitch on Tuesday as well.

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