by Jake DeLuca
What started out as an evenly matched game in the first half quickly turned into a one-sided affair as Highlands defeated Armstrong 82-39 on Friday night.
The Armstrong River Hawks varsity basketball team (5-5, 1-1) hosted the Highlands Golden Rams (6-5, 1-1) on Friday night in a WPIAL 5A match-up.
Highlands lead 11-5 after a slow first half offensively for the River Hawks.
The Golden Rams would maintain their lead throughout the second quarter, but not without a push back from the River Hawks. Armstrong’s Mike Kunst scored 11 points in the second quarter, including a last second buzzer-beater three from half court to bring Armstrong to within two at half-time down 31-29.
Once the two teams came out to the court after half-time the tides had completely changed and Highlands completely took over.
The Golden Rams outscored the River Hawks 15-7 in the third quarter and 36-3 in the fourth quarter in a dominant all around performance to seal an 82-39 victory at Armstrong.
After the game Armstrong’s Head Coach Greg Hutcherson was not happy with his teams performance.
“They punched us in the mouth and we didn’t get back up like we did in the first half. There’s two halves of basketball, we were playing a high ranked team and we thought we could just play a half, and you can’t do that. (Highlands) came into this game off a loss to Franklin Regional where they got upset. They were upset, they were mad, they were hungry, and we didn’t match that intensity in the second half,” Hutcherson said.
The River Hawks will try again for a win on Tuesday when they travel to Gateway to take on the Gators (3-6, 2-0) for another WPIAL 5A match-up.