SHIPPENSBURG - Here's the important thing about rebounds: They create second-chance opportunities, and they limit the other team's chances on the defensive end.
Red Lion took that reasoning to heart Tuesday night in the Hound Invitational Tournament.
The Lions racked up 32 rebounds while limiting the Greyhounds to just 18. That was the biggest difference in a 55-41 victory for Red Lion in a boys basketball game.
"(Rebounding) beat us last night, and it killed us tonight," Ship coach Ray Staver said. "It's hard to imagine because that's been one of our strengths, but our guards have to rebound better. We cannot rely on Teagan (Staver) and Wade (Mills) to do it every night."
Even Mills and Staver struggled on the boards, combining for just eight rebounds for Ship (7-3), and Red Lion used that to its advantage. Although the Lions (5-4) didn't shoot the ball so well - they were a mere 38.5 percent from the floor - they took 52 shots, compared to only 38 for the Hounds.
"They're bigger than us, so for us to out-rebound them like we did, it was a testament to how hard our kids played," Lions coach Steve Schmehl said. "We didn't shoot a tremendous percentage, but when you get that many opportunities, it works."
Ship guard Cody Gustafson said, "They were a really put-together team, and you could tell that a lot of those guys have been in the weight room. Maybe we need our guys to hit the weight room, and that's all of us. Our guards have to rebound better, and we have to hustle more."
Red Lion did a nice job on the boards early, out-rebounding the Hounds 18-10 in the first half, but it held only a two-point advantage at the break. But the Lions came out with a sense of urgency that Shippensburg did not match in the third quarter.
After the teams traded buckets and the Hounds tied it at 25-25, Red Lion started to take off. It went on a six-point run with a 3-pointer from Ryan Schreckengast and a 3-point play by Wyatt Tyson. Ship broke the silence with a layup from Mills, but the Lions answered with an eight-point run to bring the lead to double figures.
"After I got that technical (in the third), it backed up our kids," Ray Staver said. "(The refs) clearly missed a couple calls on our side, and we didn't respond well at all. It was still a one-possession game after (the technical), but then we turned the ball over too many times in the third and the fourth."
The Greyhounds finished with 15 turnovers.
"We feel like we have a very strong defense, and we know we can be very aggressive," Tyson said. "We like to get up on people."
Red Lion was also helped along by a slew of offensive contributors. Schreckengast (15 points), Tyson (13) and Jamel Foster (11) all had fine scoring nights.
"This was the first game we had three guys in double figures; everybody stepped up and that's what we need," Schmehl said. "We don't have a superstar on this team. We'll need everybody to play well and bring something to the table to beat good teams."
NOTES: Gustafson was Ship's leading scorer with 13 points, while Carter Van Scyoc followed with 11 and was named to the All-Tournament Team ... Gustafson racked up 5 steals and had 8 points in the fourth quarter ... Kendrick Boyd-Gillespie grabbed 9 rebounds for Red Lion, and Tyson followed with 8.
Red Lion 55, Shippensburg 41
Cody Gustafson 5 3-4 13, Wade Mills 5 0-0 10, Teagan Staver 0 0-0 0, Shuntan Hickman 3 0-0 7, Carter Van Scyoc 5 1-2 11, Clayton Stine 0 0-0 0, Garret Cavanaugh 0 0-0 0, Adam Houser 0 0-0 0, Payton Fridinger 0 0-0 0, Zach Cullen 0 0-0 0. Totals — 18 4-8 41.
Red Lion (55)
Gary Hunt 1 0-0 2, Bennett Frey 0 5-6 5, Kendrick Boyd-Gillespie 4 1-2 9, Wyatt Tyson 5 3-8 13, Ryan Schreckengast 6 1-2 15, Jamel Foster 4 0-0 11, Derek Urey 0 0-0 0, Brian Treible 0 0-0 0, Tyler Burchett 0 0-0 0, Tyler Stabley 0 0-0 0, Cameron George 0 0-0 0. Totals — 20 10-18 55.
Shippensburg _ 11 _ 9 _ 7 _ 14 _ — _ 41
Red Lion _ 10 _ 12 _ 14 _ 19 _ — _ 55
3-point goals — Ship 1 (Hickman), RL 5 (Foster 3, Schreckengast 2).
JV — Red Lion 39, Shippensburg 36. Ethan Bert and Christian Boards led the Hounds with 8 points apiece.