Perkiomen played solid team defense and junior Paulius Zalys put on an offensive show last Friday night as the Panthers won their third straight game over visiting Solebury by a score of 49-31.
The teams played a fairly even first half, with Perkiomen holding a six-point advantage at 16-10 through the first two quarters. Ten of those 16 points were delivered by Zalys, who drained five straight shots from the floor.
The third quarter started out looking very much like the first half, as the two teams jockeyed for position with neither being able to pull away.
That all changed midway through the third quarter when the Panthers put together a 13-point run that basically ended the way it had begun, on a dunk by Zalys.
Sandwiched in between the pair of crowd-pleasers by Zalys was a three-pointer by Chandler Junk and a pair of baskets by Efrain Rodriguez-Sierra. When the third quarter ended, Perkiomen had raced out to a 35-17 lead.
The 18-point advantage heading into the final quarter would be more than enough to allow the Panthers to notch their third straight win, raising the team’s overall record to 8-4.
Zalys led all scorers with a game-high 22 points. Perkiomen also got nine points from Ja’ren Hampton. Junk collected eight, including a pair from beyond the arc. Rodriguez-Sierra netted six while Tony Coleman Jr. and Levi Stoudt each had a field goal. Solebury was led by Malik Harvey, 12 points, and Justin Berger, 11 points.
Perkiomen shot 52 percent from two-point range (19-36), but were only 2-15 on three point attempts. Solebury was 3-5 from beyond the arc but only 8-27 (29 percent) on two-point tries. Perkiomen was 5-8 from the charity stripe, while Solebury made 6 of 12.
“I was really happy with our defense tonight,” said Panthers head coach Mark Longstreth. "We contained the ball well, and didn’t give anything easy. I think that as a team we realize that we still have room to get better. Once the players loosen up a bit, and get more comfortable with each other I think we will be more productive offensively, too.”
The Panthers may need to find that comfort zone with each other sooner than later, as their schedule appears to get a bit tougher in the days ahead. Today they travel to take on Collegium Charter School, before taking on the defending Tri-County League champions, Phelps School, at home on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m.