Never a doubt. Philomath dominated from start to finish, on the inside and on the outside, on offense and on defense, with the starters and with the bench. Total and complete dominance. Junction City will be a matchup problem for a lot of teams, but Philomath’s size and depth makes them generally immune from such issues. There were some questions that this game created about Junction City, but there were a lot more impressive things about Philomath that were brought to the forefront. In essence, Philomath won this game more than Junction City lost it.
Philomath has a very compelling argument to be made concerning them being ranked #1 in 4A Boys Basketball. They have height that nobody can match, the strength to go with it that nobody can match, guard play that is fierce defensively and difficult to match athletically—though the team that is ahead of them, Cascade, clearly can match it—and an overall cohesion that isn’t expected in the opening contest of a season. Not to mention, simply as icing on the cake, they have the frontrunner for player of the year on their roster in Ty May. They’ll be out-scored by few, out-defended by fewer, and out-rebounded by none.
Junction City has the pieces defensively, but the offense is a question mark. Outside shooting if it isn’t coming from Court Knabe doesn’t seem to be an option, which against most teams is going to hurt the flow of their constant motion, in-and-out, grind-it-out offense. Can they efficiency their way into wins while the explosivity is manufactured? Absolutely, but where their ceiling is at is a serious unknown. Playoffs absolutely, but the ‘contender’ label is presently in doubt.
Leading Scorers: Ty May (Philomath) 20, Cole Beardsley (Philomath) 16, Gunner Rothenberger (JC) 9, Chad Russell (Philomath) 8, Jaxon Rister (JC) 7