Admirals ramp up pressure in the second half to top Western Hills

Published 11:22 pm Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Danville basketball has won three straight games.

The Admirals (3-4) took down Western Hills 78-49 on Tuesday behind a balanced scoring effort and a tenacious defensive effort.

“I think we just keep getting better,” Danville head coach Ed McKinney said. “Early on, I think the football guys, they were still a little raggedy in transition. We dropped some passes. In the first half, I didn’t think we got out on the break. The ball was going fast but we’re not. Some of that is conditioning, some guys just getting back in the flow of it. I thought we played hard. In the second half, I thought we looked really good.”

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The Admirals had three players in double figures and 12 different players on the scoresheet in the win.

“We shot it well from three, when you shoot it better things are always better,” McKinney said. “But it’s a good recipe. I love the way we won. We had (12) guys score.”

Danville finished the game with stellar shooting numbers: The Ads were 21-for-40 from inside the arc, 9-for-17 from three-point range and 12-for-15 from the foul line.

Jared Southerland led the way, scoring 18 points on 5-of-6 shooting from the field and 5-of-6 shooting from the line. Tanner Ford had 12 points and finished 4-for-6 from the floor and 3-for-3 from the foul line.

But it was the bench that stood out for the Admirals: Zach Thornton played in his first game this season after resting a shoulder injury suffered during football season. He scored five points and had three rebounds and assists in the win.

“We’ve got a lot of players this year, it’s as deep as we’ve been in a long time,” McKinney said. “Everybody on the varsity bench has some skill. It’s tough, it takes a special bunch of kids to play nine or 10 because they have to really root for each other and be into it. Sometimes you get hung over on the bench and things are going well and you might not go back in there. But it feels like we’re handling that really good, which I’m happy about.”

Danville led by just five points at halftime, 30-25, in part due to 10 turnovers.

“A lot of those turnovers, they’re not taking them, we’re just making bad decisions,” McKinney said. “We’re rushing. We talk about fighting the urge, everybody wants to make the play. The way we’ve kind of celebrated the individualism of basketball, it’s LeBron James and the Cavaliers. Sometimes it’s hard to fight that. So I think all coaches are trying to get guys to fight that urge, move the ball and let the play happen naturally.”

The Admirals did well to shut down the Wolverines in the second half, bursting out to a 55-36 lead after three quarters. Danville forced 13 turnovers in the second half and 22 for the game.

David Walker played a large role in taking away Western Hills’ offense, securing four steals to go with 10 points.

DeShaud St. Martin had five points and led the team with five rebounds and two blocks.

Freshman Ethan Wood had eight points off of the bench, and fellow freshman Dante Hayden had five points, three assists and zero turnovers.

“We got good play from a lot of people,” McKinney said. “If we play like we want to play, we’re going to have a bunch of guys every game that you could say played well. I think shots are going to spread around, and I think we spread the ball around pretty good tonight. They played that 1-2-2 zone and that kind of slowed us down, that’s hard to play against.”

The Admirals are in the midst of a daunting stretch this week, with their third and fourth games in a row coming up later this week.

“We tried to play a lot of people tonight too because this is four games in a row,” McKinney said. “We’re in kind of the gauntlet here.”

Danville will return to the Woodford County Invitational tomorrow to face West Jessamine, a team that beat the Ads 87-61 in their second game of the season.


Box score


DANVILLE 16 14 25 23 78

  1. HILLS 15 10 11 13 49


Individual statistics



Jared Southerland 18, Tanner Ford 12, David Walker 10, Ethan Wood 8, DeShaud St. Martin 5, Zach Thornton 5, Dante Hayden 5, Tevin Cavanaugh 5, Jaleel Warren 4, Darrian Bell 2, Nick Price 2, Caden Hill 2.



St. Martin 5, Ford 4, Bell 4, Walker 3, Thornton 3, Wood 2, Hayden 2, Hill 1, Southerland 1, Warren 1.


Ford 4, Hayden 3, Thornton 3, Southerland 2, Walker 2, Trey Dawson 1.


St. Martin 2, Southerland 1, Thornton 1, Warren 1


Walker 4, Ford 2, Cavanaugh 2, St. Martin 2, Warren 1, Southerland 1.

Team shooting: 30-for-57 (52.6 percent); 9-for-17 3P (52.9 percent); 12-for-15 FT (80 percent).