Crestview’s Preston Zaleski (2) breaks away from the field for a layup after stealing the ball from a Continental player in a game at Ray Etzler Gymnasium Saturday. The Knights won the game 56-34. (Times Bulletin/Tina Eley)
Crestview’s Preston Zaleski (2) breaks away from the field for a layup after stealing the ball from a Continental player in a game at Ray Etzler Gymnasium Saturday. The Knights won the game 56-34. (Times Bulletin/Tina Eley)

BY SEAN LAFONTAINE

Times Bulletin Correspondent

sports@timesbulletin.com

CONVOY - After a hard-fought conference game Friday night, the Crestview Knights hosted the Continental Pirates in what turned out to be a very physical non-conference contest Saturday at Ray Etzler Gymnasium. The game was close early on, but the Knights used big second and third quarters to defeat the Pirates 56-34.

The two teams were tied at three different points in the first quarter. With the score knotted at eight, Tyler Rue hit a shot for Continental to put them up by two, which is where the first quarter concluded.

Crestview started off the second quarter on a 7-0 run to take 15-10 lead. Cam Etzler scored four points on the run, while Connor Lautzenheiser hit his first of four threes for the game. Continental came back with a 6-0 run of their own. Chaz Slattman stared the run with a put back off an offensive rebound. Justin Hallwill followed with two free throws and a layup to give the Pirates a 16-15 lead.

The Knights took the lead on the following possession on two Tyson Bolenbaugh free throws, and they never gave the lead back. Crestview closed out the second quarter on a 9-0 run. Lautzenheiser had five points on the run and Isaiah Simerman had an offensive rebound put back after a missed Crestview free throw. The run gave the Knights a 25-14 halftime lead.

Simerman started the third quarter with a layup off of a steal to give Crestview an 11-point lead. Slattman hit a shot at the other end to get back to within nine, but that was as close as the Pirates got. Crestview closed the quarter on a 17-6 run to take a commanding 44-24 lead after the third quarter.

The Knights maintained their lead in the fourth quarter, on their way to the 56-34 victory.

Lautzenheiser was the leading scorer of the game with 16 points, while Bolenbaugh added 10 for Crestview. The Knights had a total of eight players reach the scoring column for the game.

The Knights shot 15-of-29 (51 percent) from the field, including going 8-of-17 (47 percent) from three and 7-of-12 (58 percent) from two.

"Our guys came out a little flat, so we had to wake them up a little bit," said Crestview coach Jeremy Best. "Once we established that it was little better. Continental is extremely aggressive and they play hard. We knew it was going to be hard to find flow and rhythm in the game and it was, but give our guys credit. We played much better as the game went along and we got good minutes from guys off the bench again. It was a strange game, but we are happy with the outcome."

Hallwill was the leading scorer for the Pirates with nine points, while Slattman added eight. Continental shot 12-of-31 (38 percent) from the field, and only 1-of-9 (11 percent) from three.

"We made a ton of mistakes like we have done all year," said Continental coach Kevin Homier. "We play well in stretches, but when we start shooting ourselves in the foot, we don't stop. We made some dumb mistakes like not checking out on a foul shot twice. We just find ways night in and night out not to execute and we did again in the second quarter and that was difference."

With the win, the Knights improve to 13-2 on the season.

Score by quarters

Crestview - 8 17 19 12 - 56

Continental - 10 6 8 10 - 34

Crestview (56)

Zaleski 0-1 1-2 3-6 6, Rickard 0-2 2-3 0-0 6, Etzler 2-2 1-2 0-0 7, Lautzenheiser 0-1 4-5 4-5 16, Helm 0-1 0-2 2-2 2, Simerman 3-3 0-1 1-3 7, Heffner 0-0 0-2 2-2 2, Bolenbaugh 2-4 0-0 6-7 10

Continental (34)

Dockery 1-3 0-3 2-2 4, Schwarzman 1-1 0-0 0-0 2, Rue 2-3 0-0 1-2 5, Scmidt 1-3 0-1 0-0 2, Hallwill 2-2 1-5 2-3 9, Vogt 0-1 0-0 2-2 2, Geckle 0-0 0-0 2-2 2, Slattman 4-7 0-0 0-0 8

Three point baskets

Crestview: 8 (Zaleski, Rickard 2, Etzler, Lautzenheiser 4)

Continental: 1 (Hallwill)