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Norristown clamps down on Spring-Ford

Norristown's Darius Hopewell drives to the basket during the Eagles' game against Spring-Ford on Friday, Jan. 19, 2018. (Gene Walsh/Digital First Media)

WEST NORRITON >> Norristown High boys basketball coach Dana “Binky” Johnson has been preaching all year about the importance of defense.

Friday night at Norristown High, the Eagles gave Spring-Ford a lesson in what they’ve learned.

Keyed by the scoring of Vernon Tubbs and Mickeel Allen and a defense that limited the visiting Rams to just 15 second-half points en route to a 64-37 win, a win that propelled Norristown into a tie with Methacton for first place in the PAC’s Liberty Division.

Tubbs had 20 points and Allen added 16 as the Eagles pulled away from a 12-point halftime lead and blew out the Rams.

“I think we’re starting to create an identity,” Johnson said moments after the win. “We’re starting to gel as a team at the right time.”

Norristown’s Tyler Tate pulls up to shoot as Spring-Ford’s Austin Hokanson defends during their game on Friday, Jan. 19, 2018. (Gene Walsh/Digital First Media)

The contest began like it might be a down-to-the-wire knee buckler, but after creating a little space by halftime, the Eagles simply turned up the second-half defensive heat, and toasted the Rams.

Tubbs then all but secured the verdict when he scored the first seven points of the fourth quarter and the Eagles defense administered the clamps to the Rams’ attack.

Spring-Ford used the scoring of Noah Baker (10 first-half points) to stay close. But once the Eagles turned up the volume on their defense in the second half, the Rams were no match.

“We’re starting to gel at the right time,” Johnson said. “Offense wins games, but defense wins championships.”

Spring-Ford (37) – Harrison Pierce 4 1-2 9; Ryan Hagan 3 0-2 7; Michael Fitzgerald 0 0-0 0; Noah Baker 6 0-0 14; Patrick Kovaleski 1 0-0 2; Nestor Diaz 0 0-0 0; Braidyn Palan 0 3-4 3; Chad McMonagle 0 2-2 2. Totals – 14 6-10 37.
Norristown (64) – Vernon Tubbs 7 2-2 20; Marcus Sanford 1 0-0 3; Tyler Lyons 6 3-3 15; Cameron Weldon 0 0-0 0; Jamile Williams 0 0-0 0; Alvino McCoy 0 0-0 0; Michael Dorman 0 0-0 0; Darius Hopewell 5 2-3 12; Mickeel Allen 4 5-5 16; Willie Anderson 0 0-0 0; Tyler Tate 1 0-0 2; Thomas Reilly 0 0-2 0. Totals 23 12-17 64.
3-point goals: Ryan Hagan; Noah Baker 2; Vernon Tubbs 4; Marcus Sanford; Mickeel Allen 3.



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