HUDSON — He was not thrilled by his team's effort on the glass.

He didn't particularly care for the fact that his players settled for perimeter shots rather than making the extra pass.

In the end, though, Western Reserve Academy head boys basketball coach Thomas Adams-Wall will take the result.

The Pioneers got their first win of the season Friday on their home floor.

Reserve earned a hard-fought 51-49 victory over Cleveland Whitney Young at the Murdough Athletic Center.

WRA (1-0) led the majority of the way despite being outrebounded 32-24. The Pioneers also didn't convert too many shots in the post.

However, Reserve buried nine 3-pointers on the evening and made some critical plays down the stretch.

And those critical plays were enough to make their coach happy.

Well, sort of.

"It's hit and miss," Adams-Wall said. "We graduated eight seniors and the core of our team is four freshmen and three sophomores. Their big guys killed us and we're still not playing team basketball. We'll work at it."

WRA put it away with a 7-2 run down the stretch.

Sophomore forward Arjun Garcha scored a layup to give the Pioneers the lead for good (46-44) with approximately three minutes left.

Reserve also got a critical blocked shot by 6-foot-5 freshman forward Jalin Billingsley on a layup attempt and a key defensive rebound by sophomore point guard Cooper Parrott in the final minute.

Parrott, who is the only player on the team who got significant varsity minutes last season, sealed the deal with a pair of free throws to make it 51-46 with 13.3 seconds left.

"Our most experienced player stepped up," Adams-Wall said. "I was surprised Cooper got that rebound."

Parrott's rebound was much needed since the Warriors had their way in the post.

Whitney Young's biggest threat was center DeAngelo Lake, who led all players with 20 points and 15 rebounds.

Lake scored most of his points on putbacks as WRA could not box him out throughout the game.

Fortunately, the Pioneers made up for their lack of inside punch with some stellar long-range shooting.

Reserve was particularly hot from the outside in the first half.

Parrott canned a trio of 3-pointers and freshman guard Trevor Wood made two from deep as WRA led by nine (25-16) midway through the second quarter.

Parrott led the Pioneers with 15 points and Wood finished with 13 points.

"Trevor played awesome," Adams-Wall said. "He shoots the ball with a lot of confidence. It's good to see him knocking down shots."

Reserve led 31-26 at halftime, but the Warriors made a run in the third quarter to take a 40-39 lead.

However, WRA regained its advantage (41-40) heading into the final eight minutes when Billingsley made a nice bounce pass to Garcha, who finished with a layup with 4 seconds left.

"Jalin had four or five blocks down the stretch," Adams-Wall said. "He's a really good athlete."

Although the Pioneers were deadly from 3-point range, they were shaky from the free throw line. Reserve converted just 6 of 12 from the charity stripe.

Of course, Whitney Young was much worse on its freebies. The Warriors made just 2 of 12 from the line.

Garcha came off the bench to score 11 points for WRA. Amyr Lewis had 10 points for Whitney Young.

The Pioneers are scheduled to visit University Saturday in Hunting Valley. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m.

They are scheduled to visit Aurora Tuesday before heading to Akron to play Manchester Dec. 8. Both varsity games are set to begin at 7:30 p.m.


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