Boyle boys reach .500 with win over Danville

Published 6:56 pm Friday, February 9, 2024

It’s been a long climb to .500 for the Boyle County boys.

The Rebels have greater goals, but a break-even record is a significant milestone for a team that struggled for four weeks and spun its wheels for three more before beginning to build momentum.

They reached that plateau Tuesday night with a 64-38 win over Danville that was another indication that they’re moving in the right direction.

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It was the sixth consecutive win for Boyle, which lost seven of its first eight games in a start that was slower than coach Dennie Webb expected, even for a roster heavy with football players who didn’t join the basketball team until after the season started.

“We knew we’d come along; it just took a lot longer,” Webb said. “We did dig a big hole there, that’s for sure. But we were figuring things out and we still are to a certain degree. But it’s coming, and we’ll see how high we can push the ceiling now.”

Host Boyle (11-11, 4-2 45th District) kept Danville (5-16, 2-5) at arm’s length throughout the second half for a sweep of the regular-season series and its seventh consecutive win in the rivalry.

The Rebels have become a deeper, more well-rounded team during their recent run of success, and they used that depth to their advantage against the Admirals.

Reserve Brock Driver, Lyndon Smith and Harper Webb combined for 16 points and 12 rebounds 

“The bench is helping us a lot,” Dennie Webb said. “I think they’re buying into their roles and figuring out where they can be effective. They’re doing a good job, and that’s good because there’s going to be times when we’re going to need them.”

Montavin Quisenberry had 16 points and six assists and Seneca Driver had 15 points and seven rebounds to lead Boyle.

Quisenberry got 11 points in the first half and scored five points in the final minute of the half to give the Rebels a 29-18 lead.

The Admirals scored the first five points of the second half to pull within seven but got no closer, and Boyle used a 12-2 run that included six points by Smith to take a 56-37 lead with 4:47 remaining.

“We played probably a solid 25 minutes,” Danville coach Tryston Ford said. “We didn’t play a full four quarters, and I don’t know if it’s because we ran out of gas or because we started getting down. … We’ve got to be ready to put together 32 minutes night in and night out or we’ll have the same results over and over.”

Boyle’s defense forced 10 turnovers in the second half and 18 in all as it held a second straight opponent below 40 points.

“It was just solid pressure, and that’s what we preach at them all the time: Just be solid and not gamble and just keep them in front and pressure the ball,” Webb said. “A lot of teams, if you’re there when they turn and just keep your body there, a lot of times they’ll hand it to you or they’ll fumble it, and that’s what we bank on.”

Danville’s Ford said the Admirals do those things all too often, and Boyle didn’t do them often enough.

“On top of us struggling to score we turn the ball over too much, which hurts us even more,” he said. “And it doesn’t help when Boyle has the best point guard in the region in my opinion (Quisenberry). He doesn’t turn the ball over and he’s hard to speed up, so it just makes it tough for us on defense.”

Brock Driver had a second straight big game off the bench for Boyle with six points and seven rebounds, including five of the Rebels’ 19 offensive boards.

Trevarion Paige had 12 points and Braylon Guest had 10 for Danville, and they had five rebounds each.