Indians pound Panthers
COAL TOWNSHIP - Shamokin Area has proven it can win games, but doing so consistently has eluded the Indians at times.
After a 34-22 loss to Midd-West last week, the Indians took a week to regroup then pounded Milton, 45-36, in a Heartland Conference Division I game Saturday.
The win keeps Shamokin, 5-1 in HAC-I, tied with Danville for the division lead, with the Ironmen coming to Shamokin Monday night.
"We had a week off and we got healthy," Shamokin head coach Bill Callahan said. "We came to play today and I think that's what frustrates our fans, our parents, our coaches and the players because we look good sometimes and sometimes it looks like we're not here.
"We played very well today against a good Milton team. If we come to play every day, we'll be okay."
Olivia Bonshock led the Indians with 20 points, including two 3-pointers, and 13 rebounds and set the tone both inside and outside, something the Indians will need on a nightly basis with the playoffs approaching.
"She did a super job and controlled things on the boards," Callahan said.
Bonshock started the game by scoring the Indians' first two points as they jumped out to an 11-1 lead.
Guards Sami Schiccatano and Shaylee Pesarchick each added seven points for the Indians in the game and both had a hand in the Indians' initial run.
"I thought Sami did a good job on their guards and helped us control the ball," Callahan said. "I thought overall it was a nice job."
But when Milton closed the gap to 11-7, Bonshock reemerged as the Indians' hot hand. She scored back-to-back buckets to end the first quarter and open the second, then, with Milton back to within three at 20-17, Bonshco, scored six of the Indians last eight as Shamokin went into the locker room with a 28-17 lead.
Bonshock, a junior forward, set a new career high for herself with the 20 points, and Shamokin, which never trailed, cruised easily in the second half.
The focus after the game for Shamokin, which is four wins away from clinching a District 4 Class AAA playoff berth, was on the next week and not the last one.
Starting with Monday's game against Danville, the Indians have a total of four in six days. Tuesday, Shamokin plays Selinsgrove, followed by games against Shikellamy Friday and Tri-Valley, ranked No. 1 in the state in Class A, Saturday.
"We have a tough stretch," Callahan said.
"We could win our division or be out of the race by the end of this week. There's a lot of things going on, but we have to focus on what we have to do."
What the Indians have to do is play consistently.
MILTON (36) - Geasel 3 1-2 7, Lincoln 0 0-0 0, Miller 2 3-6 7, Brown 1 0-0 3, Landis 0 0-0 0, Kyle 0 0-0 0, Swartz 1 0-0 2, Brouse 2 1-2 6, Baker 4 3-6 11. Totals 13 8-16 36.
SHAMOKIN (45) - Schiccatano 3 0-1 7, Erb 0 0-2 0, Forbes 1 0-1 2, Pancher 1 0-0 3, Bonshock 8 2-2 20, Yacko 3 0-0 6, Pesarchick 2 2-2 7. Totals 18 4-8 45.
3-point FGs: Brown, Brouse, Schiccatano, Pancher, Bonshock 2, Pesarchick.