Below the headlines there are many efforts that contribute to team success. NEPA Sports Nation takes a weekly look at some of those contributions. Here are the Key Contributors from the week of Dec. 6-12:
AVA CALLAHAN, Pittston Area girls basketball
Callahan had five assists and four steals when Pittston Area opened with a 44-17 victory over Delaware Valley. Callahan had two of her steals while the Lady Patriots were forcing 13 turnovers and allowed the Lady Warriors just 3 shots in the first 12 minutes. Four of Callahan’s assists set up close-range baskets while Pittston Area was making more than half of its shots over the final three quarters. Two of them were diagonal passes zipped through the lane to give her teammates open layups.
ARVEL CHANDLER, Scranton boys basketball
Chandler was an efficient shooter while making other contributions to Scranton’s 69-64 victory over Crestwood is a season-opening battle between teams that both won division and district titles last season. Chandler had 16 points on just 11 shots, going 3-for-5 from 3-point range. He also shared the team assist lead with 4 while turning the ball over just twice and keeping the Knights’ turnover count, against a tough defense, to just 10 while the team was getting off 51 shots.
AUBREY CURLEY, Holy Redeemer girls basketball
Curley scored just five points in the 46-21 victory over host Selinsgrove in the championship game of the Angela Wolfe-Royalty Memorial Tournament, but her contributions to Holy Redeemer’s title were recognized with a selection as the tournament’s Most Valuable Player. Curley was the top scorer in the semifinal with 14 points in a 40-39 victory over Blue Mountain. She had nine points in the second half to ger the Lady Royals through the close game.
KHALID MORRISON, Hazleton Area boys basketball
Morrison took just six shots, but hit four to score eight points in a 62-49 win over Allentown Dieruff in the opener. The 6-foot-7 senior center led the team with 11 rebounds, extending possessions with 7 on the offensive end, and led the defense with 3 blocked shots.
KEVIN ROBY, Pittston Area wrestler
Roby went 4-1 at 126 pounds, losing only to defending state champion Jaden Pepe from Wyoming Area, during the Gary Woodruff Memorial Duals at Wyalusing Valley. The Patriots won the team title on a tiebreaker, but in order to do so, they first had to stop Wallenpaupack’s attempt to finish unbeaten and secure the championship. Roby pulled out an 11-10 decision, with only two more bouts to follow, to clinch that 45-30 victory.