HURRICANE, W.Va. - On a night in which its vaunted 3-point shooting turned as frigid as the air outside the gym, Hurricane found out just how valuable a big man like Henry Sorsaia really is.The Redskins, known for their shooting from distance, went an abysmal 1 for 15 from 3-point range and found themselves down 15-11 after the first quarter as the misses piled up.Enter 6-foot-5 Sorsaia, who asserted himself after that initial barrage of clanks and piled up 29 points and 10 rebounds as Hurricane (4-1) rode its post player and pressure defense to a 57-46 win over Parkersburg on Tuesday night.Sorsaia scored 10 of his points in the second quarter and nine in the third as the Redskins turned that early four-point deficit into a 13-point lead entering the final period."We recognized that I was definitely a lot better in the paint than Parkersburg's big men," Sorsaia said. "So we started working in there and I got going and we started going in and out.""We try to preach inside-out, and when we go inside-out our outside shots start falling," Hurricane coach Lance Sutherland said. "It's not rocket science, it's just strictly basketball sense, basketball smarts. You go inside-out, you get in a rhythm, and your shots will go in."The outside shots never did start going in for Hurricane on Tuesday, but its defense proved more than capable of winning a game.Sorsaia added three blocks and three steals and solidified the middle while Hurricane's pesky guards harassed Parkersburg ball-handlers all evening, forcing the Big Reds (1-4) into 28 turnovers, including 10 in the third quarter alone.Outside of a superhuman effort from Parkersburg's Ja'Darien Wade, who hit 11 of 11 shots from the floor and his only foul shot en route to a team-best 23 points, the Big Reds managed just 10-for-40 shooting and took only three free throws.
But despite the impressive defensive numbers, Sutherland was a long way from happy with his team's overall performance."We played Logan and had a week off, came back and played Ripley and it was the same way," Sutherland said, speaking of long layoffs between games. "We played a great game against Winfield and we came out here and we were flat. [Parkersburg] plays hard and hustles and gets after it, but honestly we're better, and it didn't show."We'll go back to the drawing board [today], but if we play like this against Point Pleasant [Thursday] we're going to get beat - flat out, that simple."In addition to Hurricane's misfires, Parkersburg built its early advantage due to Jordan Colebank, who had eight of his 12 points in the first period. He added 14 rebounds.The Big Reds clung to a 23-20 lead midway through the second quarter until the Redskins ended the half on a 6-0 run to seize a three-point lead at the break. Hurricane then opened the second half on a 6-0 run to push its advantage to nine and the game was never in question again."We're just too damn careless with the ball," Parkersburg coach Jeff Mennillo said. "We don't make good decisions offensively and the shame of it is I think we guard pretty well. Hurricane is a pretty good team and they obviously picked it up a little bit there in the second half, but I'm just disappointed with our offensive decision making."
Garrett DeFries chipped in 14 points for Hurricane. Trey Dawson, despite making just 3 of 11 shots for six points, made his presence felt with seven rebounds, three assists and six steals.Reach Ryan Pritt at 304-348-7948, firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow him at twitter.com/RPritt.