By Corey J. Corbin
Allied News Sports Correspondent
MERCER COUNTY AREA —
SLIPPERY ROCK -- Many coaches preach limiting turnovers as a means to a victory.
Or at least to stay in a ballgame.
But 28 turnovers -- in 32 minutes of game action -- is a quick hook as Slippery Rock (0-2, 1-4) found out the hard way as they fell to Region 5-AAA rival Farrell (1-1, 2-2). 68-48, Tuesday evening at Slippery Rock High School.
“I thought we shot the ball well in the first half,” Rocket coach Phil Bushre said. “I think we shot 47 percent, but 16 turnovers isn’t going to get it done. I thought some of the turnovers weren’t good turnovers. That wasn’t the kind of game we needed to play to win tonight.
“I thought we did some things to relieve the pressure and were making some strides. Early on, we were overplaying some things. In the heat of the game, you forget to do some of the things you need to do and that’s what we did early.”
By committing 16 turnovers in the first half, the Rockets allowed the Steelers to take a commanding 29-10 lead midway through the second quarter, but SR closed to within 31-23 with a 13-2 second quarter ending run.
The run was keyed by senior reserve Kyle Bell, who scored 7 of his 8 points during the second quarter run.
“Kyle is really getting better and is doing well,” Bushre said. “He needed to see the ball go in and he did that with a lay-up. He’s really hustling around.”
The Rockets could never close the gap any more than that, but stayed within striking distance with a more balanced scoring sheet that saw Brady Kadlubek, Bruce Pelletier, Jake Whitmer, Shane Karl and Delmas Hayes contributing.
It was Bobby Paczkowski’s four straight freebies that pulled the Rockets to within 13 at 56-43, but it was all Steelers from there.
“We got it to within 13 there in the second half, but we didn’t get the defensive stops we needed to,” Bushre said. “We had some careless turnovers and I don’t think we shot it too well in the second half either.
“I’m very proud of the guys for not giving up. We’re going to get one. We just got to (put a complete game together). They played real hard. There were a lot of good moments.”
Paczkowski led the Rockets with 20 points, while Whitmer had 7 points and 5 rebounds. Kadlubek had 5 points and 5 rebounds.
“If you look at the scoreboard, Bobby is either our leading scorer or is right up there,” Bushre said. “He’s doing it in a variety of ways. He’s shooting real well right now. I thought he stepped up to hit those four free throws. I don’t know if he missed a free throw.”
Notes: The Rockets made 16-of-41 attempts from the field, 12-of-19 from the sin stripe and 4-of-10 from downtown, while Farrell connected 27-of-48 from the field, 9-of-20 from the free throw line and 5-of-12 from the three-point line. … Marshaun Hyman led Farrell with 20 points and 6 boards, while Jamel Brown and Tyronne Archie evenly split 22 points and 12 rebounds. …Farrell committed 15 turnovers and outrebounded SRHS 37-32.