They may not be LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, but the St. Joseph (Met.) core of Karl Towns, Wade Baldwin and Marques Townes are starting to see some similarities, of course on a smaller scale.
Admittedly strapped with a lack of identity during the team’s opening days this winter, the new-look Falcons have finally begun to jell and see the effects of coming together like the NBA’s most feared trio.
“I think we’re starting to show we can run a Miami Heat-type offense that thrives in the transition,” the Kentucky-bound Towns said. “The fact that we’re able to beat everybody up the court – and rarely be in a half-court set – is a major asset for us.”
Using such an explosive mentality in the open court paved the way for St. Joseph to construct a fast start and then keep the pressure steady throughout in its latest victory, an 82-41 drubbing of Neptune at the Hoop Group Battle of the Boardwalk showcase at Long Branch High School on Saturday.
Towns scored 23 points and Baldwin added 18 as St. Joseph (Met.) cruised to its eighth win in nine games since dropping their first contest against league foe East Brunswick.
“It was very important,” Towns said of the hot start. “We’re usually a slow-starting team that comes out connecting in the third quarter. So, the team’s improving and I’m proud of my team."
Townes, who eclipsed the 1,000-point mark for his career last week, contributed 17 points – including a buzzer beater from 75 feet away at the end of the third quarter to forge a 71-29 cushion. More than anything, the jaw-dropping highlight was one emphatic example of everything going right for the Falcons.
Even newcomer Raven Owen, an underclassman point guard who transferred from Xaverian (N.Y.) got some minutes and showed a thirst for consistently breaking down the front-line defense and hurling his slender frame to the rack.
“He’s blossomed into a great player,” said Towns of Owen, who came off the bench and scored five points, backing up starting senior Jimbo Long. “I’m impressed with is ability to get to the rim. He’s also disciplined and he gives us another defensive presence.”
St. Joseph improved to 8-2 overall and will likely retain its No. 7 ranking in the MSG Varsity New Jersey poll.
Shakeem Richardson poured in 19 for Neptune, which fell to 4-6 overall. The Scarlet Fliers were shorthanded, as their best player, Keith Kirkwood, was on a football recruiting visit to the University of Hawaii.
Contact Brian Fitzsimmons at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter: @FitzWriter