“I thought that third quarter was critical. We started to play better defense and hit timely shots. We know they are a really good outside shooting team, and that was one of my main concerns.”
Correale gave Onessimo a great pass in the paint, and he put it in to start the third quarter to increase Peabody’s lead, 30-17. D’Amato followed with a jump shot before Paul Lazzaro (eight points) answered at the other end for the Hawks.
“This wasn’t about me but about how we performed as a team,” said Onessimo. “I was in the right place at the right time and got some great passes. Once I got going I felt really good.
“We needed a win, and I think our strong defense had a lot to do with getting it; our pressure not only caused turnovers but created a lot of transition points. We’ve got a big game against Gloucester on Friday so we’ve got to get ready for that one.”
The Tanners kept the pressure on, and went on a 9-0 run to go up by 23 points late in the third quarter. Their full court press caused several turnovers that they were able to capitalize on at the other end.
“We’re vertically challenged,” said Hawks head coach Jody Norton after his team fell to 2-6. “Defensively we broke down. Our guys got in foul trouble so we switched to a zone which allowed Peabody second, third, and even fourth chances to score.
“We had a lousy shooting night, and maybe some of that was because we played last night so we were a little tired. The reason why we schedule Peabody is because we want to play teams that will make us better. If we do get to the Division 4 tournament games like this one are really going to help us.”