Polytech's Eric Laster led all scorers with 26 points to help lead the Panthers to a 58-44 victory over St. Andrew's in the 2nd round of the DIAA Boys State Championship Tournament.
The Panthers posted a 19-point second quarter, riding that wave well into the second half to beat a talented St. Andrew's team.
During that 19-point second quarter Polytech started to hit nearly every shot they took, eventually charging out to a big lead. On the other end of the floor the Panthers did a good job of keeping Austin Tilghman under wraps. Even though Tilghman posted a team-high 19-points, he was never able to grab control of the game.
Also, St. Andrew's Benjamin Bentil got into early foul trouble, which quietly swung the momentum as Bentil is one of the Cardinals key players.
The Panthers offense was deadly from inside and out as the Cardinal defense simply had no answer for an offense that hit 10 three-pointers.
Polytech's Justin Braddy played an important role, leading the charge from the back-court, posting 19-points.
Polytech clearly came into Friday's contest with a game plan, one that worked to perfection if you ask Head Coach John Pierce.
"We scrimmaged St. Andrew's earlier so we kind of knew what they had," said Polytech Head Coach John Pierce. "They have two tremendous players and we knew what we had to do with them."
Pierce commented on his player’s energy level and what sets them apart from other teams.
"We practice how we play, we practice hard against each other," said Polytech Head Coach John Pierce. "So, whoever we play is always getting our best."
Eric Laster relished the moment after having such a big game and realizing he and his squad was headed back to the Bob Carpenter Center.
"I'm at a loss for words, we just wanted to come out play hard and play good D," said Polytech's Eric Laster. "We knew we had a good game plan, we knew we were going to win."
Laster and his teammates were tremendous on the offensive end during the majority of the game. Nearly every shot found its way into the cylinder.
"It felt great, confidence is the key to everything," said Laster. "So, as long as we stay confident we think we can beat anybody."
"We have a lot of chemistry, we have a lot of good players that play their roles," said Laster. “We play defense that's what we take pride in. We know if we play defense the offense will take care of itself. "
The Polytech Panthers will now compete in the Quarterfinals on Sunday evening at the Bob Carpenter Center.
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