SINCLAIRVILLE - Ryan Robson scored 23 points, and had six assists and five steals to lead the Sherman Wildcats to a 71-46 victory over Cassadaga Valley in a West 2 Division basketball game Friday night.
The Wildcats, the fourth-ranked Class D team in the state, opened up a huge, early lead and were never truly threatened in raising their record to 14-1 overall and 9-1 in the division.
"Tonight, it was like we were shot out of a cannon," Sherman coach Corey Emory said.
Photo by Scott Kindberg
Sherman’s Ryan Robson is on the move against Cassadaga Valley.
The first four minutes were pretty explosive.
Senior Ryan Robson scored on layup, and classmates Andrew Graham and Ryan Myers drilled back-to-back 3-pointers, forcing Cassadaga Valley coach Rich Clifford to call a timeout before the game was even two minutes old.
But the Wildcats weren't through.
Junior Nathan Ottaway converted two more layups, followed by a Robson steal for an easy hoop. After a second Cassadaga Valley timeout, Robson scored on a drive, pushing the visitors' lead to 16-2.
The game wasn't yet past the halfway point of the opening period.
"Sherman's an awesome team,'' Clifford said. "They just have so many weapons.''
On this night, Robson was the one who stood out the most.
Limited to eight points in his first game against the Cougars earlier this season, Robson had all his talents on display before a nice crowd.
"He had a great game," Emory said. " ... As the season has gone on, he's playing better and better ... and he's starting to understand what he does well and really playing to his strengths."
Against Cassadaga Valley (9-5, 5-3), it was hard to detect any weakness.
Robson's eight-point second quarter helped the Wildcats take a 38-25 lead into halftime, an advantage that grew, thanks to two more Robson treys, to 57-33 heading into the final period.
Graham finished with 17 points, including a pair of treys, Ottaway - starting in place of the ill Devin Moorhead - added 10 and senior Jordan Boland came off the bench to provide solid minutes.
"It's been a great year," Emory said.
The defending Section 6 Class D champions hope to keep it going as the postseason looms in a couple weeks.
"That's my most fun time of year," said Emory, now in his 17th season. "I don't know if we can (play better) or not, but that is truly one of our goals. We want to be play our best basketball in the playoffs."
The Cougars were led by junior Cody Johnson, who scored 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds, Randy Dalaba who scored 10 points and Mike Lancaster who grabbed nine boards.
While Clifford has been generally happy with the team's defensive effort all season - in six of the Cougars' first 13 games they held opponents to under 40 points - he has concerns at the offensive end.
"We have to score more points," he said.
The way the Wildcats were playing last night - they also forced 20 tunovers - finding answers at that end of the court was hard to do.
"They are the odds-on favorite for Section 6," Clifford said. "I'm pulling for them to win the whole Class D in the state. They love basketball and they play hard. I'm rooting for them."