WILMINGTON — The Salesianum basketball team put up just 30 points in their last game, but the Sals made sure that was an aberration when they met Wilmington Christian three days later at Father John Birkenheuer Gymnasium. Sallies scored 30 points in the first quarter alone and was never threatened in an 87-55 victory on Feb. 9.
The sun was shining on the Sals from the start. Jackson Conkey started the scoring with an inside field goal; he would score six in the quarter. A three-pointer from Rasheen Caulk, followed by a Caulk rebound and a long outlet pass to Justin Molen for a layup, made the score 11-2 and prompted a timeout by the Warriors.
Daniel Starkey hit a corner three out of the timeout to bring some temporary relief for Wilmington Christian, but the Sals ran off the next nine. Ethan Hinds had nine points during the prolific first quarter, which ended with the Sals holding a 23-point advantage.
The pace did not slow in the second quarter, even if Sallies’ shooting percentage dipped a bit. One highlight of the quarter was a four-point play courtesy of Caulk. Conkey and Pat Methlie continued the team’s strong game in the paint. Conkey was able to draw a few fouls on the Warriors, and Methlie grabbed several rebounds and put up four points.
Wilmington Christian was not able to cut into a 29-point halftime deficit, but the Warriors played fairly evenly with the Sals in the second half. They heated up from beyond the arc in the second half, with Starkey draining a trio and Kye Bryant a pair of threes. Dante Brinkley had 10 points in the fourth quarter, including four of four from the free throw line.
The Sals did not slow their pace in the second half. Hinds scored six points in the third quarter, and he was one of nine players to score in the fourth. Molen had four points in the fourth on a pair of dunks as his strong junior campaign continued.
Four Sals reached double figures, led by Hinds with 19. The others were Molen (16), Conkey (12) and Caulk (11). All told, 11 Sals got on the board. Sallies improved to 4-2 and will travel to Delmarva Christian this Friday night at 6:15. They will then host the Royals on Saturday at 5 p.m.
For the Warriors, Starkey hit four three-pointers on his way to 18 points. Brinkley had 15, and Bryant added 12. The Warriors (4-3) are at Wilmington Friends on Thursday at 4:30 p.m.
All photos by Mike Lang.