Wheeling Park cruises past Bruins, 76-45

WHEELING – Brooke’s sensational sophomore Angela Staffileno scored 24 points and yanked down 14 rebounds, but it wasn’t enough for the visiting Bruins to stay in touch with West Virginia-ranked Wheeling Park on Tuesday night.

The Patriots went on a 22-0 run starting midway through the first quarter and continuing until the 3:32 mark of the second. That explosion, keyed by strong play on both ends of the floor, opened the flood gates for a 76-46 Park victory.

Senior all-stater Emily Puskarich led three double-digit scorers for Park (8-5) with 20 points and she added seven rebounds. Coming off the bench to provide some needed offensive production for Park were Danielle Kutrovac and Chloe Robb with 15 and 10 points, respectively.

The Patriots, 98-30 winners against Brooke (1-14) in their mutual season opener, had 11 players enter the scoring column during the rematch, and it was Park’s passing that impressed coach Dee Davis the most.

”We’ve been working on passing the basketball and I thought we really did a good job of it,” Davis said. ”Getting Marissa (Tucker) back in the lineup helped a lot.”

Back from an injury which kept her off the court for three games, the dependable Patriots point guard Tucker scored eight points and matched Puskarich’s total of seven rebounds.

Davis, hopeful of getting all five of Park’s starters healthy and ready to play in Thursday night’s key contest against John Marshall, rested Haley Robb during much of Tuesday night’s game.

With the 6-foot-1 Staffileno scoring seven points and rebounding five missed shots in the opening quarter, Brooke held the lead twice. Staffileno’s only miss from the foul line in eight chances came on the first of a two-shot foul at the outset of the game. She swished the second attempt to put the Bruins in front 1-0.

Puskarich quickly countered by burying a 3-pointer out of the corner. Her 10-point opening quarter outburst also included a conventional three-point play on a stickback and free throw that broke a 7-7 tie halfway though the stanza.

Brooke rebonded with Payge Farmer’s game-tying three-ball and a foul shot by Michaela Hinerman that put the Bruins ahead for the final time, 11-10, at the 3:21 mark.

Hampered by 11 turnovers during the first eight minutes and nine more in the second quarter, Brooke did not score again until Hinerman’s stickback goal with 3:58 remaining in the half still left the Bruins trailing by 32-13.

Overall, the Bruins had 28 turnovers. The Patriots committed 19 in the game, most of which were unforced.

”We’ve been hot and cold with the turnovers,” Scherich said. ”We played University last week and had only 14 turnovers and they pressured us just like Park did. Both are good basketball teams but we just didn’t take care of the ball.”

Sherich remains hopeful that Brooke will be able to provide some additional scoring help for Staffileno.

”Hinerman’s been playing a lot better recently and has been scoring some points. She had 30 in one game and 15 against Linsly. She had nine (Tuesday night). We need one other player to help out on offense.”

Wheeling Park 76, Brooke 45

Brooke 11 6 12 17 – 46

Wheeling Park 21 23 20 12 – 76

BROOKE: Cline 1-5 2-4 4; Farmer 1-6 0-1 3; Hinerman 4-13 1-2 9; Preston 0-7 1-2 1; Staffileno 8-17 78 24; Sherman 0-1 0-1 0; D’Ulisse 2-5 1 0-0 5; Altobell 0-1 0-0 0; Totals: 16-55 11-18 46. 3-pointers: Farmer, Staffileno, D’Ulisse.

WHEELING PARK: Tucker 3-7 0-0 8; H. Robb 1-6 0-0 2; Kel. Johnson 3-8 0-0 6; Ken. Johnson 0-1 1-2 1; Puskarich 8-11 3-3 20; C. Robb 2-6 5-8 10; Kutrovac 4-4 6-6 15; O’Neal 3-7 0-0 6; Taylor 1-3 0-1 2; Slater 1-10 1-2 3; Loew 0-4 0-0 0; Bumgardner 1-4 0-0 3; Totals: 27-62 16-22 76. 3-pointers: Tucker 2, Puskarich, C. Robb, Kutrovac, Bumgardner.