Heroics from Barrow and Carangi lead Knights past Pioneers


Prasham Jobanputra

Kolby Barrow shoots a three to give the Knights a 62-60 lead in the 4th quarter.

TOWAMENCIN- Even though the district is on winter break, the boys basketball team hosted the Pioneers and with a 4-game losing streak, they got the holiday gift they were looking for.

“That’s a great high school basketball game if you’re a fan of high school basketball. Hot gym, loud and credit North Penn.  They played really well,” Pioneers head coach, and former North Penn head coach, Michael Fergus said.

The North Penn Knights (2-4) beat the Dock Mennonite Academy Pioneers (5-2) 69-67 in a game that went right down to the wire.  The Knights were without senior captain, Mike Chaffee for the second straight game as he rests a knee injury.  He is expected to return this weekend.

Center Matt Swanson got the scoring started as he scored off an assist from Joe Larkins.  Darius Ellis, the Pioneers own big man, responded with a layup on the other end.  Larkins, on the next possession, made a jumper to give the Knights a 4-2 lead.  The Pioneers tied the game at 9 with 3:23 left in the first quarter, thanks to a baby hook from Ellis.    They took the lead until Kolby Barrow made a layup to tie the game at 11.  Josh Jones then converted on both of his free throws as the Knights went up 13-11 with 1:22 left in the opening quarter and took an eventual 15-13 lead into the 2nd.

Prasham Jobanputra
Rob Carangi dunks the ball for the Knights off an assist from Billy Coley

Steve Martin then got hot for the Pioneers.  He made three straight three-pointers to give the Pioneers a 22-18 lead over the Knights with 5:19 left in the 2nd.  The Knights tied it up as Jones went 2/2 from the line and then they retook the lead off a Rob Carangi layup with 4:23 left in the half.  With 1:46 left in the half, the Knights went on a fast break and Billy Coley found Carangi who dunked the ball through the net to get the crowd and his team pumped.  The Knights extended their lead to double digits with a 3 from Coley and eventually ended the first half with a 38-28 lead.

The Pioneers came out of the locker room at halftime ready to rumble as they went on a 15-5 run to tie the game with 1:29 left in the third quarter.  They tied it up on a layup from Dallas Wilder Hamilton who was fouled in the process.  His and one free throw was good and the Pioneers took a 44-43 lead.  The 3rd quarter ended with the score at 48-44 in favor of the Pioneers.

Then, it was Kolby Barrow’s turn to take over.  Barrow tied the game up at 54 with a three and then with 3:48 left in the game, he made another three, off an assist from Larkins, to take a 57-54 lead.  10 seconds later and the game was tied again as Ellis made a layup and converted an and one free throw.  18 seconds later, Jones made another two free throws and the Knights went up 59-57.  Martin made his 5th three-pointer of the night and gave the Pioneers a 60-59 lead.  The Knights ran the same play as before and got the same result, as Barrow made another three in the same spot off an assist from Larkins, and the Knights had a 62-60 lead.

“We were running mainly the set play and that was allowing me to get open and it was just a matter of me hitting my shot,” Barrow said.

Prasham Jobanputra
Barrow celebrates his clutch three-point barrage.

Ellis then made another bucket followed by an and one free throw and the Pioneers went up 63-62.  With 2:21 left in the game, Larkins made a layup and the Knights were up 64-63.  Wilder Hamilton responded with a layup to reclaim the lead.  Swanson took it back by going 2/2 from the charity stripe and Jones extended that lead to 67-65 with a made free throw.  Ralph Saint-Fleur made a layup to tie the game at 67 with a minute left.  The Pioneers had a chance to take the lead as they sent up their best shooter, Martin, to the free throw line with 34.3 seconds left.  However, he missed both of his free throws and the Knights took advantage on the other end.  Coley missed a difficult layup, but Carangi got the offensive board and put it back in to give the Knights the lead.

“I was just trying to position myself.  I just had to be in the right place at the right time and I was able to secure the board and put it back in,” Carangi said.

The Pioneers took a timeout to discuss a play and had one shot to either win, send the game to overtime, or lose a tough game.  They got the ball to Devon Jainlett who shot a three from the right corner.  It was no good and Swanson got the rebound as the Knights hung on to win.

“We just kept talking about how we needed some defensive stops and ironically enough it ended on a defensive stop.  Just thought our kids grinded really well despite a terrible third quarter,” Head Coach John Conrad said.

The Knights will have a few days off and will return to the court Friday followed by Saturday, as they compete in the Holiday Tournament at Perkiomen Valley.

Dock Mennonite Academy: Derstine 2 pts, Dallas Wilder 7 pts, Jainlett 8 pts, Saint-Fleur 8 pts, Ellis 19 pts, Martin 23 pts

North Penn: Coley 8 pts, Jones 8 pts, Swanson 8 pts, Carangi 14 pts, Larkins 14 pts, Barrow 17 pts