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MAHS boys basketball team falls to Camp Hill, Trinity

By Larry Etter

Press & Journal Staff

Posted 1/29/20

The Middletown boys basketball team lost two more games in the last week, but it wasn’t for lack of trying.

Facing Camp Hill and Trinity, two teams that own a combined 24-7 record, the Blue …

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MAHS boys basketball team falls to Camp Hill, Trinity


The Middletown boys basketball team lost two more games in the last week, but it wasn’t for lack of trying.

Facing Camp Hill and Trinity, two teams that own a combined 24-7 record, the Blue Raiders gave both a good fight but came up short. They stand at 4-12 on the season.

On Jan. 21, the Raiders hosted Camp Hill, the Mid-Penn Conference Capital Division’s third-place squad, and were within 4 points of the Lions’ lead with six minutes left in the game.

But their efforts went unrewarded as the guests were able to fight off a comeback attempt in a 65-55 decision.

On Friday at Trinity, the Blue Raiders hung tough with the heavily favored Shamrocks but were held off 56-45 by the division leaders.

The Middletown team was scheduled to host West Perry on Tuesday, a team that the Raiders beat in the season’s first half, before making a trip to Lancaster County to take on Pequea Valley on Wednesday.

On Saturday, the boys and girls teams are scheduled to take part in the YIAA/Mid-Penn Showcase at Gettysburg High School in games that had been postponed from Jan. 18.

They then are home to Milton Hershey on Feb. 4 and at Annville-Cleona on Feb. 6 before wrapping up at Lower Dauphin on Feb. 7.

Camp Hill 65, Middletown 55

Junior Julian Nester scored a game-high 29 points and classmate Tymir Jackson put in 11 to lead the Middletown offense, but those tallies were not enough to offset the balanced scoring of Camp Hill in the loss.

Jake Perry (25), Cam Ochs (13) and Connor Trumpy (10) led the Lions to the win on the Blue Raiders’ home court.

The Blue Raiders stayed within striking distance throughout the game and trailed 47-43 with 5:19 left. But the Lions outscored their hosts 20-14 after that to turn away the upset bid.

The Raiders grabbed a 5-2 lead early on a trey by Tajae Broadie and a drive by Nester and built their lead to 11-5 on a pair of triples by Nester around a Camp Hill basket by Trumpy. But the Raiders made just 1 of 4 free throws in the last three minutes and the Lions closed out the period on back-to-back goals by Greg Labine and Perry to take a 15-14 lead.

At the 3:46 mark of the second stanza, the home team eased back in front 20-19 following a pair of foul shots by Broadie. But, again the Lions, led by Perry’s 12 points, regained control and owned a 30-25 lead at halftime.

That 5-point lead held up through the end of the third quarter, although the Raiders put together a 7-0 run in a 47-second span late in the period that made it 37-36 with 1:59 left. A pair of free throws by Daniel Shuster and another Perry basket made the difference.

Jackson’s backdoor bucket off an Omarion Fanus assist started the fourth quarter and Nester’s trey following a 4-0 run by the Lions made it a 45-41 game with 6:10 left. Jackson’s putback answered a goal by Ochs at 5:19, but the Raiders would get no closer the rest of the way.

The Lions picked up valuable points from the foul line down the stretch to turn aside a Raider rally.

Trinity 56, Middletown 45

Trinity coach Larry Kostelac revamped his starting lineup to honor his seniors for the game’s first couple minutes on Friday night, and the Blue Raiders played hard on their way to an early lead against the Shamrocks.

And, even after Kostelac started filtering in his regular starters, the Raiders did not buckle. A putback by Tony Powell in the final minute and a steal and drive to the basket by Tate Leach gave the visitors an 11-9 lead at the end of one period. Leach, a 5-foot-6-inch sophomore, stole the ball from Trinity star Chance Westry and drove the length of the court with Westry on his heels. 

The Shamrocks, however, opened up the second stanza with a 5-0 run to take the lead and, despite the hard working efforts by the Raiders, the home team did not trail again. After Broadie scored to stop that early run, Marcus Beckett scored 5 straight points, and the Shamrocks cashed in a pair of Middletown turnovers into a 23-13 lead with 3:44 left in the first half. When the first half ended, the host team had outscored Middletown 21-11 on its way to a 30-22 advantage at the break.

The lead grew to 34-24 with five minutes left in the third quarter before the Raider offense got back on track. Broadie drained a three at 4:40 and a trey by Jackson at 3:18 cut the gap to five, 36-31. Late goals by Jackson and Nester cut the difference to four, 40-36, but Trinity picked up a late bucket by Terry Lawson to take a 42-36 lead heading into the final frame.

At that point, the Blue Raiders needed to just keep their momentum going, but a shaky start to the fourth quarter hurt those chances. Three missed layups in the first 1:30 of the fourth, along with troubles at the free throw line, allowed the Shamrocks to put some distance between the two teams.

With 3:54 left, the lead had grown to 50-37 and proved to be just a bit too much for the Raiders to overcome. Four straight foul shots by T.J. Daniels and Broadie cut the lead to 52-43 with 2:18 left, but Trinity did just enough to stay ahead.

Taking advantage of several missed shots by Middletown in the late going, but struggling from the foul line themselves, the Shamrocks were able to hold on.

Broadie and Jackson teamed for 26 points in the loss while Westry, a college Division I prospect, collected a game-high 20 points for the winners.