Scratch and claw

Da'Quis Brown, left, and Jaylen Warren of Great Crossing tie up the ball to earn an alternating possession at Harrison County on Saturday night.

CYNTHIANA - Athletic, balanced, charitable and deep.

If Great Crossing boys' basketball can apply those ABCDs all winter as effectively as the Warhawks did in Saturday night's season-opening scrimmage, it will spell doom for most 41st District and 11th Region opponents.

After giving up the first six points of the evening, Great Crossing more than doubled up Harrison County, 62-32, in a clinic that included two dunks, a dizzying array of passes to the open man, and smothering defense to fuel it all.

“I know through three quarters one of my favorite things was we had 14 assists on 21 buckets,” GC coach Steve Page said. “We have a lot of talent, and if they can play together all the time with that talent, hopefully they saw it today."

The Warhawks wound up with 17 room service deliveries on 26 made baskets, and of equal importance, 24 steals among 33 Thorobred turnovers.

Weapons big and small reached the rim without impunity as a result. Jeremiah Godfrey, a 6-foot-6 sophomore, led the Warhawks with 11 points. He's part of a twin-tower starting lineup that also includes 6-10 freshman Malachi Moreno (eight points, eight rebounds).

“If I'm going to play that lineup, we have to dominate the inside, because we spread the ball a little bit more when we're not playing two bigs,” Page said. “Jeremiah's had a great preseason, had a good summer for us. He's probably a year ahead of what I expected honestly. He's come on gangbusters.”

Vince Dawson joined Godfrey in double digits with 10 points and matched Moreno with a second-half jam.

Tyquan Stakelin (two 3-pointers) and Da'Quis Brown each added eight points. Brown's boundless energy – he also made five steals and dished out three assists – fueled GC's rapid rally from the early deficit.

“When Da'Quis locks in and guards people, he's awfully darn good, and he brings our team up a lot,” Page said.

Junius Burrell (seven points, five assists, three steals) and Gage Richardson (six points on consecutive corner 3-pointers in the second period) enhanced the onslaught.

Carson Walls drew the loudest cheer from the GC bench for drawing an offensive foul with his team on top by 36 points late in the contest.

“That's the good thing about the scoreboard being cleared after every quarter,” Page quipped. “They didn't know the final score until I just told them what it was.”

Great Crossing shot better than 50 percent in the first half. The Warhawks ended the opening quarter with a 14-2 run before dominating the second stanza by a 17-5 margin.

Walls and senior classmate Tye Schureman combined for eight steals. Stakelin, Godfrey and Richardson each added a pair, promoting GC's quick transition preferences.

“With the kids we have, the goal is when the goal comes out of the net, just fly as quick as we can. Man, we defended,” Page said. “We're deep, so hopefully it will show up all year.”

Great Crossing is off until its second and final scrimmage Saturday, Nov, 27 against Harlan County at South Laurel.

“If they keep that energy, that enthusiasm, we can be awfully good,” Page said. “It's a scrimmage. It means nothing at the end of the day other than us trying to get better, But I loved our enthusiasm on the bench. We didn't have that the last couple years.”

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