Josh Verlin (@jmverlin)
Philadelphia Electric & Technical Charter got solid performances from two unlikely sources to help them to a fairly easy road win on Thursday afternoon.
Marquese Daniels had a career-high 23 points and Dyshon Pack added 14 as their team jumped out to an early double-digit lead and never looked back, beating Prep Charter 84-52.
It was a 15-5 lead for P.E.T (7-7, 3-2 Public League) in the first three minutes without a point from any of its usual main contributors–forward Jai Williams (10.0 ppg) and guards Steve Griffin (10.8 ppg) and Hakeem Baxter (17.8 ppg). Daniels scored seven points in the first quarter and hit the biggest dagger of the afternoon, a 30-foot 3-pointer at the halftime buzzer to send the Electrons into the break with a 44-31 lead.
“This has been his best game so far,” Electrons coach James Lewis told CoBL about Daniels, a 5-9 senior guard. “He defended well, he shot the ball well, he was actually great tonight.”
Griffin, a 6-1 senior guard, began this game on the bench in favor of Pack, a 6-5 wing, for the second time this season.
“Four-year player here and he has grown dramatically,” said Lewis, who added that Pack was getting looks from D-II schools East Stroudsberg and Shippensburg. “This was his second start of the year and I think he played extremely well on the defensive end…this was actually one of his best games also.
“Just wanted to go bigger tonight as far as lineup, and I think it worked out pretty well,” Lewis added.”
A high-academic student with a 3.9 GPA, Daniels wants to play basketball in college but is hoping to walk on at the Naval Academy–where he was recently accepted–or Penn, where he has an interview in the next few days.
Baxter, a 6-2 combo guard who’s got the interest of several low-major D-I programs, hit three 3-pointers as part of his 19 points, adding in six rebounds, three steals and at least four assists.
Prep Charter’s best collegiate prospect is junior Mustapha Traore, who finished with a 18 points to lead the Huskies (2-7, 1-4). The athletic 6-8 forward played well defensively as well, matched up with SJU-bound senior Jai Williams, and more than held his own on the block. Traore got the best of Williams on several occasions, out-rebounding his slightly taller opponent eight to three and getting in a few blocks as well.
“He’s still a junior, he still needs a lot of work,” said Prep Charter coach Rahim Washington Sr., who named Quinnipiac and George Mason as the two schools asking about Traore. “What you’re seeing today is just a small display of a portion of his game. He still needs to work on his ball-handling…it’s just a matter of picking up his work ethic a lot more and taking advantage of opportunities.”
Traore almost single-handedly kept his team in the game for the first half. After P.E.T. took that early 10-point lead, he scored 12 points in a row for his team to prevent the visitors from pulling away any further.
Any chance of a Prep Charter comeback win was ended in the third quarter, when Daniels scored eight points as part of a 16-0 run by P.E.T. that ended with the Electrons up 66-39.
“This is a young basketball team…coming into the game, we just had to work on some things. We took a tough loss two nights ago to Math, Civics and Sciences.”