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Cougars take PVL top spot from Princeton boys
In a game between the only two undefeated teams in the Pioneer-Valley League boys basketball standings, Paradise Adventist established itself as the team to beat with an emphatic 65-35 victory Tuesday against host Princeton High.
The Cougars (13-6, 5-0 PVL) and their wide-open offense worked like a well-oiled machine, building a lead of 21-8 after the first quarter. Princeton (7-8, 3-1 PVL) dropped into second place with their first league loss of the season.
"Jason (Eyer) is doing a hell of a job with those guys. He works them hard and they take advantage of the fact that they get a lot of practice time, so much respect to Paradise," said Princeton coach Travis Bennett.
The Eagles started with two starters on the bench and relied on defensive stalwart Gavino Mitchum for offense early in the game.
Mitchum scored all seven of his points in the first quarter, and finished with six rebounds and a blocked shot.
"Gavino is the MVP of our team right now. Usually offensively he steps back because he puts so much energy on defense but he was aggressive, he was attacking the glass, he was getting fouled and going to the free-throw line," Bennett said.
Mitchum held Cougars' leading scorer Jonathon Pierson to 10 points, well below his 16.5 point average.
While Mitchum limited damage by Pierson, Paradise Adventist forward Ronald Cameron had a big game, scoring a game-high 17 points and adding eight rebounds.
"(Cameron) is not a prototypical big guy. He didn't post up… but he kept working screens and flashing to the hoop. That kid is a special player, that team is special," Bennett said.
The Eagles entered halftime down 33-16 and struggled to close the gap against a deep Cougars bench.
Fernando Sotelo led Princeton with 12 points in limited playing time, and Rod Angus came off the bench to score four points and grab five rebounds before fouling out.
Princeton plays at home on Tuesday against Providence (4-11, 1-3 PVL).
CONTACT Kirk Barron at 458-2121 or email@example.com.