Reserves come up huge for Eastern
Although some fans may not buy it, as of Thursday Eastern York coach Larry Fisher really said he thought his team would be without guard Ryky Smith because of injury, and possibly Bryton Abel and Dalton Reichard because of illness.
While all three eventually played, only Reichard started in the Golden Knights PIAA Class AAA tournament opener against Archbishop Carroll.
Even against the odds, Eastern's 56-55 win - which avenged an 11-point early-season loss to Carroll - was a team victory in many ways.
The starting lineup featured Ryan Bailey and Matt Diehl - both of which despite not scoring, played very well before giving way to their more known teammates.
Bailey handled the ball well when he got his touches against the pressure defense of Carroll and Diehl guarded Patriot guard Juan'ya Green and helped hold the Niagra recruit to 12 points - nine below his average.
"Matt Diehl earned our hardhat award," Fisher said after the game. "He guarded Juan'ya Green and really gave him fits. He was able to get through the screens and channel (Green) to the help defense. offensively he limited his turnovers and really took care of the ball."