BY SEAN LAFONTAINE
Times Bulletin Correspondent
ARLINGTON - After defeating cross-county rival Lincolnview Friday night, the Crestview Knights made the long trip to Arlington Saturday night to take on the sixth-ranked Red Devils. Crestview used their athleticism and deep bench to put constant pressure on Arlington, on their way to a 39-18 victory.
Early in the first quarter, with the game tied at two, the Knights went on an 8-1 run to make the score 10-3. Cam Etzler led the charge, scoring four points during the run. Alex Brown and Tyson Bolenbaugh added the other two baskets for the Knights. Crestview held on to a 14-7 lead after one quarter.
Crestview opened up the second quarter on an 8-0 run. Etzler again led the run with four points. Bolenbaugh and Damian Helm added the other two baskets. The Knights used full-court pressure and a run-and-jump defense to slow down the Red Devil offense, and held Arlington to only three points in the second period. The Knights took a 23-10 lead into the locker room.
The second half was much of the same. Both teams continued to struggle offensively, especially Arlington. Crestview outscored the Red Devils 9-4 in the third quarter. Freshman Connor Lautzenheiser paced the Knights with five third-quarter points. Crestview led 32-14 after three quarters.
The Crestview defense continued to stifle the Red Devils in the final frame, holding them to only four fourth-quarter points en route to a 39-18 road win
The Crestview defense was the strength for the Knights throughout the game. They allowed no more than seven points in a quarter, while forcing 19 Red Devil turnovers. The Knight defense held Arlington to 32 percent (8-25) from two-point land, and allowed no three-pointers (0-9).
The Crestview offense struggled throughout the night as well despite shooting an impressive 14-27 (51 percent) from two. They only went 1-11 (9 percent) from three-point land, however. Crestview also drained 8 of 11 (72 percent) free throws.
Etzler and Lautzenheiser led the way for Crestview, both scoring 10 points apiece. Bolenbaugh added seven, while Helm added six for the Knights.
The win improves Crestview to 10-1 on the season.
Even though the Knights struggled at times on offense, coach Jeremy Best was very pleased with his team's defensive effort.
"I really loved our effort. Our intensity was awesome. We still made some mistakes and didn't finish some plays and shots, but I was really happy overall with our intensity all night long," said Best. "Defensively, to hold a team like this to 18 points takes a really solid defensive effort. I thought we really threw them off their rhythm and momentum."
Going into Saturday night, the Red Devils were ranked sixth in the state in division four. Best spoke about what kind of statement this made for his team.
"We talked about having the opportunity to do it. You never know when you are going to get this opportunity, and when you do you want to take advantage of it because it may be your last. I thought our kids really took that to heart and digested that. We always like playing Arlington. They are well-coached and a top-notch program. Our kids really earned it tonight."