By PETER DiGIOVANNI
WESTTOWN -- West Chester Rustin came in to Tuesday's Ches-Mont League American Division contest against Oxford on a roll after upsetting previously unbeaten Great Valley last week, but coach Sean Harvey drew up the perfect game plan, and his players executed it with precision.
Most everything the Hornets tried, worked as they put four players in double figures and played stellar zone defense en route to a convincing 74-59 triumph in a key American Division contest.
Oxford (5-1 Ches-Mont, 11-3 overall) jumped out early on the Golden Knights (3-3, 6-6) and never looked back. Oxford dominated from the outset, getting to the rim whenever they wanted and passing well on the interior for good looks. It added up to a 25 for 42 (59 percent) shooting night for the Hornets,
"Coach tells us to go to the basket and play to our strength,' Oxford junior Ryan Hubley said. "We may not be the biggest team around, but we are strong underneath because we are mostly football guys. We try to find mismatches underneath and use our bulk.'
Rustin had to settle for 3-pointers due to the 3-2 and 2-3 zone defenses that Oxford played to perfection. Rustin shot 22 for 56 (39 percent) and never looked comfortable on offense.
"Coach Harvey stresses defense and tonight we played it really well,' Hubley said. "We like to play defense and it worked out for us tonight.'
Hubley led all scorers with 22 points, he was joined in the points party by Jordan Logan with 18. Dylan Dunn added 16 and Musty Mahmud chipped in with 12.
"The kids on the first day of practice -- it was Miles Clarke -- who said we are going to have a different leading scorer every night and that is what has happened,' Harvey said. "It is a testament to the kids.'
Oxford bolted out to a 32-23 halftime advantage thanks to Hubley's 10 points. The Hornets outscored Rustin, 17-12, in the second period, after leading by five points at the end of the first frame.
A Dunn steal and layup made it a 25-16 game midway through the second. After Ethan Ridgeway drilled a 3-pointer to make it 25-19, Oxford took off again. A Hubley bucket in tight, then a Logan jumper made it 29-19. Dunn then stripped Tyler Blake and scored on a layup for a 31-19 lead and Rustin was in need of the halftime break.
"Our defense was not good at all tonight,' Rustin coach Keith Cochran said. "We got our butts kicked tonight. Oxford was getting good looks and when those shots went down, they gained confidence. Give them credit. They are hot right now and we are a up and down team again.'
Oxford opened the game up in the third, outscoring the Golden Knights, 22-15. Hubley recorded eight points in the period as Oxford shot 7 for 11 in the period. Rustin did close the lead to 38-28 when Andrew Chobany, who had a team-high 15 points, scored in tight.
But the night belonged to the Hornets. a Hubley follow, a basket by Logan on a runout and a Dunn follow on his own missed shot put any comeback hopes from Rustin on the back burner. Oxford was in total command, taking a 55-38 lead into the fourth.
Rustin used a full-court press in the final period, forcing four turnovers, but Oxford also received three uncontested baskets after breaking the press. Rustin also turned the ball over 15 times on the night, which further impeded its comeback plans.
"This is a great group of kids and tonight, they played defense very well,' Harvey said. "We tried to mix up our zones and confuse them. What you don't want to do is confuse your own kids. Our zones worked well and then we threw in some man-to-man. Tonight was all about the kids and their effort.'
Oxford 74, W.C. Rustin 59
OXFORD: Hubley 8 6-8 22, Logan 6 4-5 18, Dunn 7 0-2 16, Mahmud 2 8-8 12, Clarke 2 2-2 6, Herb 0 0-0 0, Sumner 0 0-0 0, Mosley 0 0-0 0. quigley 0 0-0 0, Sivels 0 0-2 0. Totals 25 20-27 74.
W.C. RUSTIN: Chobany 5 5-8 15, McCarrick 3 0-0 8, Ridgeway 5 0-0 11, Richardson 6 0-0 13, Ammerman 1 0-0 2, Halverson 1 0-2 2, Andersson 1 2-2 5, Blake 1 0-0 2, Okine 0 12 1, Matthews 0 0-0 0, Toll 0 0-0 0. Totals 22 8-14 59.Oxford 16 17 22 19-74
W.C. Rustin 11 12 15 21-59
3-point goals: Logan 2, Dunn 2, McCarrick 2, Ridgeway, Andersson, Richardson.