CLEVELAND — No matter the venue the basics of basketball remain the same — rebounding and defense win games.
Open Door learned that lesson the hard way Thursday in a 44-37 loss to Youngtown Christian at Quicken Loans Arena.
The Patriots (3-4) came out strong, holding Youngstown Christian without a field goal in the first seven minutes of the game. Eventually the Eagles found their shooting touch — senior guard Darien Townsend started hitting outside jumpers and 6-foot-6, 250-pound center Tymere Dubose dominated inside the paint. Dubose, a University of Kentucky football recruit as a defensive end, led all scorers with 14 points and grabbed a team-high 11 rebounds.
“We didn’t crash the board the way we needed to and we didn’t play defense as a team and they took advantage,” Open Door junior Danny Stintsman said. “I’m just very grateful we had the opportunity to play on an NBA court. Not many people get a chance to say they did that.”
Stintsman and fellow junior Andrew Patterson each put up 11 points to lead Open Door. Patterson also grabbed 17 rebounds for the Patriots, although Youngstown Christian held a 42-33 advantage as a team.
Patriots coach Todd Wright has scheduled a number of games at Quicken Loans Arena over the years to provide his players a chance to experience the NBA atmosphere.
“I love this for the kids,” Wright said. “It’s an experience they’ll never forget and they will talk about for a long time to come. We played Youngstown Christian last year for the first time and we really respected the way they did things, and I thought this would be a great chance for two small schools to get a chance at something like this.”
The winter storm that blanketed the area with snow Thursday held up the Open Door bus, and the team arrived less than 30 minutes before game time. However Wright said he doesn’t feel the lack of preparation factored into the final score.
“We didn’t get to warm up and talk like we usually do before games, but like I told the team after the game, there’s always things that come up but we were both out on the court and they scored more points than us,” Wright said. “End of story.”
A girls game scheduled earlier Thursday between Field and Ravenna Southeast was cancelled due to the weather.
Youngtown Christian (3-4), which is coached by former University of Kansas captain and Phoenix Suns draft pick Dolph Carroll, extended its lead to as much as 10 points early in the fourth quarter.
Open Door closed to within four on a bucket by Patterson and four Caleb Crowder free throws, but then missed five straight free throws with a chance to make it a one-possession game.
“We turned the ball over too much, we missed free throws and I missed some layups in the fourth quarter,” Patterson said. “They played well, but I feel like we beat ourselves with those mistakes. It’s so different being here at The Q. We know the pros are running up and down this court every day. It’s fun to be here but it’s also disappointing when you don’t get the win.”
Neither team shot the ball often or effectively from behind the 3-point arc. Stintsman and J.P. Miraldi had the only successful 3-point shots of the day for Open Door.
Contact Todd Shapiro at 329-7135 or email@example.com.
Youngstown Christian 44, Open Door 37
YOUNGSTOWN CHRISTIAN (44): Darien Townsend 1-10-12, Robert Thompson 3-2-8, Paris Bennett 1-0-2, Shawn Staples 1-0-2, Tymere Dubose 6-2-14, Ryan Houston 1-2-4, Jaquan Green 1-0-2. Totals 14-16-46.
OPEN DOOR (37): Caleb Crowder 1-4-6 Drew Zaborowski 1-2-4, J.P. Miraldi 2-0-5, Danny Stintsman 3-4-11, Andrew Patterson 5-1-11. Totals 12-11-37.
Youngstown Christian 8 13 10 13 — 44
Open Door 7 9 6 15 — 37
Three-point goals: Open Door (Stintsman, Miraldi). Field goals: Youngstown Christian 14-48 (29 percent), Open Door 12-50 (24 percent). Free throws: Youngstown Christian 16-23 (70 percent), Open Door 11-20 (55 percent). Rebounds: Youngstown Christian 42, Open Door 33. Turnovers: Youngstown Christian 26, Open Door 19. Total fouls: Youngstown Christian 16, Open Door 16. Fouled out: Townsend.