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  • Val T.

Malchow’s 200th win comes in Zebra triumph over Trinity Greenlawn

Leasure scores 14 as Rochester wins 3rd-place game at Wawasee


BY VAL TSOUTSOURIS

Sports Editor, RTC

SYRACUSE — The Rochester boys basketball team won a consolation game at the Wawasee Holiday Invitational Friday night, but the milestone for coach Rob Malchow might be considered more than just a consolation prize.

With help from Paul Leasure’s 14 points, Malchow earned his 200th career win as a boys basketball coach as Rochester knocked off Trinity Greenlawn 54-41 in the third-place game.

Deeper and bigger than the Class 1A Titans, Rochester went on a 13-4 run to open the second quarter and build a 13-point lead. The lead reached as high as 18 and stayed in double digits for the remainder of the game.

“That’s pretty special,” Malchow said afterwards. “To be around long enough and in 15 seasons to get that many wins with the guys, I’ve had some really good players through the years. Coach (Luke) Smith is on the bench with me now, helping me coach on that end and played for me. And obviously, there are just a lot of guys, and I told these guys before the game, I just said, ‘I’d like to put this thing behind me, so let's get it done today.’”

In opposition to the Woodlan game that preceded it earlier in the day, Rochester got more varied scoring: All nine players who played scored. Only three different players scored against Woodlan in a 25-point loss.

Sophomore Bryce Baugher added a career-high eight, and Aidan Smith hit a pair of 3-pointers for six during the second quarter run as the lead reached 25-12. Tanner Reinartz also hit a pair of 3s for six, and Brock Bowers had six too.

Baugher said Malchow emphasizes fundamentals and defense, adding that if you can’t play defense, then you can’t play for him. He admitted that he did not expect to get as much varsity playing time as he has received so far but said his improvement defensively has led to increased minutes. He said he went to Culver Academy girls basketball coach Bill Murchie during the summer to work on his game.

“It feels really good,” a smiling Baugher said. “We were able to get Coach’s 200th career win today, which is very special for him. And I’m glad we were able to accomplish that for him.”

Senior center Gabe Hunsberger led Trinity Greenlawn with 15 points before fouling out with 2:41 left. Zach Roeder scored all 14 of his points off the bench in the second half, including four 3-pointers.

Rochester forced 26 turnovers, varying its defenses from a man-to-man to a 2-3 zone to a halfcourt trap and three-quarter court and fullcourt presses.

“You press against teams that you can press against,” Malchow said. “There are teams who you know that will probably struggle against the pressure. Woodlan wouldn’t have struggled with that pressure, so we’ve got to get better, whether it’s man to man or zone, against the good teams and contain and do a better job of scoring because you just can’t go out and trap everybody and expect to get points from that because there are a lot of teams who are well-schooled in how to handle that stuff and they can make those defenses look really bad, but tonight we came across a team we could use it against, and … our best offense was our trapping defense.”

The team looks to develop depth as the season progresses. Baugher played full-time varsity at Wawasee, and Smith played in just his second and third games at Wawasee since coming back from post-concussion syndrome. Malchow also said that he sees sophomore guard Drew Bowers getting more varsity minutes after a strong JV tournament at Wawasee.

“It’s nice to have some depth in the sense of being able to play this style when we can,” Malchow said. “But there’s also going to be times where we’ve to buckle down and shorten the game and play more of a halfcourt style and find out how we’re going to win those games.”

Malchow went 135-73 in nine seasons in his first stint as Zebra coach from 2002-11. He has won 65 games in his second stint since returning in 2017 for a 200-122 overall record. That does not include his win total as girls coach in the 1990s.

Woodlan went on to top Wawasee 55-43 in the tournament championship game.

Rochester 54, Trinity Greenlawn 41

TRINITY GREENLAWN (41) (1-8)

Josh Rose 3 0-0 6, Nathan Skendzel 0 0-0 0, Teddy Skendzel 2 0-0 4, Jack Trumble 1 0-0 2, Gabe Hunsberger 6 3-3 15, Zach Roeder 5 0-0 14, Michael Loughran 0 0-0 0, Eddie Sgroi 0 0-0 0, Josh Heintzelman 0 0-0 0, Eann Gatuna 0 0-0 0

TEAM: 17 3-3 41

ROCHESTER (54) (4-3)

Owen Prater 2 1-2 5, Paul Leasure 6 0-0 14, Brock Bowers 3 0-0 6, Tanner Reinartz 2 0-0 6, Luke Hunting 1 2-2 4, Ethan Medina 1 0-0 3, Bryce Baugher 4 0-0 8, Aidan Smith 2 0-0 6, Xavier Vance 1 0-0 2

TEAM: 22 3-4 54

Three-point field goals:

Trinity Greenlawn 4 (Roeder 4),

Rochester 7 (Leasure 2, Smith 2, Reinartz 2, Medina)

Total fouls: Trinity Greenlawn 7, Rochester 7

Fouled out: Hunsberger (TG), 2:41, fourth

Turnovers: Trinity Greenlawn 26, Rochester 12

Score by quarters

Trinity Greenlawn 8 11 12 10 – 41

Rochester 12 19 16 7 – 54


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