Norwich 58, Susquehanna Valley 47
CONKLIN – Norwich chopped down an opponent with much bigger size, and won its fifth straight game to start the season beating Susquehanna Valley on the road Friday night.
The Tornado, facing a formidable SV front line that featured 6-foot-7 and 6-foot-6 starters, won the rebounding battle, did not give up an offensive rebound in the first half, and forced 19 turnovers to lead 32-20 at the break. The only shortfall on the Tornado’s ledger was less than 30 percent shooting in the first half.
“For us to outrebound that team, given the size differential, is a testament to the heart and desire of this team,” said Norwich coach Mark Abbott.
Jon Foulds had his best all-around game for Norwich this season finishing with 16 points, 15 rebounds, five steals, six assists, and four blocked shots. Norwich upped its lead to 19 after three periods, but had to withstand SV’s early fourth-quarter spurt.
The Sabers started the final quarter on a 10-0 run to close to within nine points. “We didn’t play good offense at the start of the quarter,” Abbott said. “We were shooting the ball too quickly and weren’t making good choices.”
After that spurt, a Norwich timeout settled the Tornado down with Foulds grabbing a rebound, then taking the ball coast-to-coast for a layup. Following a defensive stop, Dennis Oralls hit a three, and Foulds following that up with a trifecta raising the lead back to 17 points. Oralls led Norwich with 18 points to go with five steals. Seth Thomsen added his first double-double of the season totaling 11 points and 11 rebounds.
“We’re very excited about our start to the season,” Abbott said, whose club held a 35-34 rebounding edge and forced 30 SV turnovers. “At the beginning of the season, there may have been questions about what ability this team had and its team chemistry. I think we’re coming together nicely. The guys enjoy practice and being around each other. We’re very tight-knit.”
Norwich (5-0) plays at Johnson City Tuesday.
NOTES: Norwich has now forced 59 turnovers over the last two games (EFA and SV) and has 36 steals in those contests...Norwich shot 22-for-67 for the game (32 percent) and had 13 turnovers in the contest.
NHS: Kyle Edwards, 1 0-0-2; Nate Ashton, 0; Dennis Oralls, 6 2-4-18; Patrick Taylor, 0; Josh Favaloro, 0; Jacob Kelly, 2 0-0-4; Frank Somich, 3 0-0-7; Seth Thomsen, 5 1-3-11; Jon Foulds, 5 4-4-16; Eric Walling, 0; Zach Martinson, 0. Totals: 22 7-11-58.
SV: Sam Green, 0; Nick Stenton, 0; Taylor Deeter, 0; Austin Simond, 3 0-0-7; Josh Swanger, 1 0-0-3; Dylan Brandow, 0; Colin Manchester, 4 2-2-13; Brendan Normile, 7 3-4-18; Trenton Benton, 3 0-0-6. Totals: 18 5-6-47.