Photo Gallery | Hoosac Valley boys basketball routs Pittsfield
PITTSFIELD — Hoosac Valley coach Bill Robinson didn't have to think long to answer the question. Could he believe what his Hurricanes had done in the first quarter against Pittsfield?
"No. Not after the other night when they beat Taconic, no," said Robinson, who saw the 20-2 score as the first quarter came to an end.
It didn't get much better for the Generals, who trailed by as many as 36 points in the fourth quarter before falling 64-30 to Hoosac Monday night at the Moynihan Field House.
"I think we probably caught them at a good time, because they beat Taconic [Friday] night and I'm sure it was very electric in this gym the other night," said Robinson.
Matt Koperniak had 18 points while Jameson Coughlan had 11 points and a game-high 15 rebounds for Hoosac (6-5), who led 32-8 at halftime and cruised home to a decisive victory.
"It was hard to believe that," said Coughlan. "I know what our defense can do. This is what we did the past few games.
"At the beginning of the season, I don't think the effort was there as much as it is now. Trust me, coach has been yelling and screaming at us to dig in on defense. We're not going to score 60 points every game."
The visitors jumped out and scored the first 17 points of the game. Pittsfield (6-6), meanwhile, went 0 for 10 to start the game, missing three easy layups in that spurt. The Generals might have been shut out were it not for Edwin Rodriguez, who scored off a Hoosac turnover with 20 seconds left in the quarter.
It was quite a turnaround from Friday night when Connor McDonough's 3-point basket gave Pittsfield a win over city rival Taconic in a game before a full house at the Field House.
Pittsfield coach Steve Ray said after the game that he and his coaching staff saw before the game that the Generals didn't seem to have enough pep in their step.
"We could tell in the warm-ups there was no intensity. They came out flat," said Ray. "They spent a lot of emotional energy Friday night."
That was also demonstrated by the rebounding statistics where Hoosac out rebounded Pittsfield 44-29.
Hoosac scored off the opening tip. Koperniak drove to the basket, and then made it 4-0 on the put-back of a miss by Dahandray Sistrunk. When Sistrunk found Koperniak for a back-door layup to make it 8-0, Ray had seen enough and called time.
"I told our guys to jump on them early," said Robinson, "so you don't get their crowd into it.
"As a coach, you're happy when [the score] was like that. I've been on the other end too, and it's not fun."
A comeback from 20-2 is daunting but not impossible. But Pittsfield gave up the first six points of the quarter and that made things academic. Coughlan scored his team's first two buckets of the quarter, one on a nice assist from Koperniak and the other on an assist from Avery Hall.
"I thought it would be a tough game. This team [Pittsfield] has a lot of athletes, but shots fell for us at the beginning," Koperniak said. "We had some fortunate bounces. A lot of their shots were misses."
No Pittsfield player cracked double digits. Josh Moore came off the bench to score nine points and lead the Generals.
The win puts Hoosac over .500 for the first time this year, and perhaps as importantly, sends a signal to everyone else in Division III that the Hurricanes may be a team to be reckoned with in March.
"We're just trying to find our way still," said Robinson. "Tonight we got over the .500 mark and we hadn't been there all season.
"We put ourselves back in the race for the North."
HOOSAC VALLEY (64)
Hall 3-0-9, Rousseau 0-0-0, Hayer 0-0-0, Carlow 4-0-8, Koperniak 6-6-18, McGrath 0-1-1, Lancia 1-0-3, Mendel 0-0-0, Sistrunk 2-3-7, Barrow 2-3-7, Coughlan 5-1-11. Totals 32-14-64.
Rodriguez 1-0-2, Reinhold 1-0-2, McDonough 0-0-0, Matthews 0-1-1, Moore 3-3-9, Higuera 3-0-6, Muzzy 2-1-5, Ter. Boire 1-0-3, Nassif 0-0-0, Driscoll 0-0-0, Ty. Boire 1-0-2. Totals 12-5-30.
3-point goals — HV 4 (Hall 3, Lancia). P 1 (Ter. Boire).