It was an exciting game to end 2016, but the La Vernia Bears couldn’t overcome a first-quarter deficit Dec. 30, falling to the Pleasanton Eagles, 49-42.
The Eagles pulled away early in the first quarter, putting 19 points on the board to La Vernia’s 12 points. The Bears woke up in the second quarter, besting Pleasanton’s 5 points with 6 of their own, bringing the score at the half to 24-18, Pleasanton.
La Vernia burst out of the locker room for the third quarter, with Kyle Moczygemba sinking a trey from the corner to start things off. With an aggressive La Vernia defense keeping their opponents out of the paint, layups from Major Muenster and Derek Miller brought the Bears to within 1 point of the Eagles at 28-27. Pleasanton eventually got the message, however, squeezing in 7 quick points to widen the gap to 33-27.
The Bears turned up the intensity even more in the fourth quarter but couldn’t seem to get any points on the board, attempting several long shots to no avail. Pleasanton pulled the score up to 40-27 before free throws from Dillon Bellino and Brock Roberts stemmed the tide.
While an aggressive full-court press and two-on-one marking resulted in several steals for the Bears, a strong Eagle offense kept slipping through the cracks. Several free-throw points, plus layups from Moczygemba and Bellino, kept La Vernia on the board, but it wasn’t enough. The game ended at 49-42, Pleasanton, bringing the Bears’ overall record to 9-13.
La Vernia’s Roberts led the Bear offense with 11 points, while Bellino got 9 points, and Forde got 8 points.
Miller and Forde had six rebounds each, and Roberts stole five balls for the defense, with Muenster snagging four and Colton Weidner getting three.
La Vernia welcomed John Paul II Guardians Jan. 3, and takes on the Somerset Bulldogs Jan. 6.