Boys Basketball: Strong start helps lead Skyline over Saline

The Skyline boys’ basketball team won a solid game against a solid team on Friday night with a 69-59 victory over the Saline Hornets at Skyline.

The Eagles got off to a very strong defensive start with half court man-to-man defense on Saline’s strong guards and mostly limited them to one shot.

Ish Abdul Aziz, James Harrison Jr. and Kaleb Schlecht took turns defending Romeo Love and Braden LaRusso to try their best to contain them. Skyline was also able to score in the paint and from the perimeter (four triples) in the first half with good movement and unselfish play to build a convincing lead going into halftime.

Skyline led 16-11 after the first quarter and 36-21 at halftime.

In the third quarter, Saline would come out with more intensity and Skyline was able to maintain its intensity as well. The Eagles pushed the lead to 17 points at 53-36.

The Eagles extended the lead to 20 points early in the fourth quarter. Saline would go to full-court pressure/trapping and was able to cause some turnovers as Skyline’s focus and attention to detail was not as strong in the fourth quarter. Saline was able to convert some turnovers to easy baskets and cut the lead to single digits with about 3 minutes to play.

But the Eagles finished the last 2 minutes strong, taking care of the ball and making free throws to secure the double-digit win.

Ben Stille led the Eagles with 21 points along with 2 rebounds; Sam Koelling had 16 points, 8 rebounds and 3 assists; and Jayden Potts had 12 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assists for the Eagles.

Will Gardner (7 points, 5 rebounds and 7 assists), Lucas Lynch (6 points and 1 rebound), Ish Abdul-Aziz (4 points and 1 rebound), James Harrison Jr (2 points and 1 rebound) and Kaleb Schlecht (1 point and 4 rebounds) all contributed to the win.

LaRusso led Saline with 16 points.

Skyline will be at Pioneer on Tuesday.