Coach pleased with effort as Mallards played hard against strong SS squad

(Feb. 28, 2020) Despite being down four players due to injury, the Worcester Prep boys’ basketball team put up a good fight against the Salisbury School Dragons during last Wednesday’s Eastern Shore Independent Athletic Conference semifinals in Salisbury.

“We were down 10 at halftime. I felt like we were in the game for a while,” Prep Coach Keith Geiger said. “We played hard. All things considered, I thought we played really well. We did our best.”

Salisbury won the game, 64-47.

Geiger said freshman Griffin Jones had to step up because of players out with injury.

“He played amazing. He had a great game, best game of the year,” Geiger said.

Senior captain Ryan Cronin led Worcester with 10 points and six rebounds.

Griffin, who played point guard, contributed with nine points, six rebounds, three assists and three steals.

“Griffin came in to be the ball handler,” Geiger said. “This game we needed him. He’s a small guy, he just needs confidence and this was a great game to go out on to give him confidence for next year.”

Geiger stepped in to take over as head coach of the team in mid-December. The Mallards were 1-4 at that time.

He previously led the team for six seasons, retiring as head coach at the end of the 2017-18 season. Last year and at the start of this season he was helping out with the middle school basketball program.

Worcester finished the season with a 10-10 record.

“I think we won all the games we should have won,” Geiger said, adding that it was a fun season. “I hadn’t coached any of these guys before … It was a whole new group of kids that I got to know. The best part for me is getting to know the kids, seeing what they’re like, talking to them and the relationships, I think that’s my favorite part of it.”

Geiger presented the team MVP Award to junior Mason Brown. Cronin earned the Coaches Award and sophomore Michael Wehberg took home the Most Improved Award.

Brown and Cronin received All-Eastern Shore Independent Athletic Conference honors.

Brown led the team this season with 181 points.

Sophomore Brice Richins was presented honorable mention accolades. He was second in scoring this year with 162 points. Cronin finished in third with 144 points.

The team will graduate its two senior captains – Cronin and Sam Tinkler.

Geiger said he thinks the team will be competitive next year as many underclassmen gained varsity game experience.

“[Griffin is] small, but he probably has the best basketball IQ on the team. He knows how to read the defense and pass the ball and dribble, so if he gains some confidence and gets a little stronger he’s going to be really good,” Geiger said. “Everybody else, all the juniors and sophomores –Brice is only a sophomore, Mason has another year left, Michael Wehberg is only a sophomore. They got a lot of playing time this year and experience.”

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