By Les Dixon/Sports Editor
CORBIN — It looks as if both Zack Farley and the Corbin Redhounds have flown under the 13th Region Radar.
Not many publications were giving either much love before the season began, but if the first two games of the season are any indication of how things might pan out, both Farley and Corbin are going to prove the prognosticators wrong.
For the second day in a row, Farley led Corbin in scoring with 24 points, as the Redhounds remained a perfect 2-0 on the season after knocking off Knoxville Catholic Saturday, 69-60.
“I was very surprised when he wasn’t ranked in the top 10 of the Cats’ Pause,” Pietrowski said. “He has done a lot of good things for us. Zack is a really good point guard and he can do a lot of different things and he’s a leader out there. As the year goes on, I believe more and more people are going to see what he can do.
“He did a lot last year,” he added. “I think the perfect thing is that he’s kind of flown under the radar and been in the backseat of the region, but when we get scouted more and other teams see the box scores, they’ll key in on him. He’s had an excellent career and I’d love to see him continue at this level of play.”
Corbin jumped out on the Irish in the first quarter by knocking down seven-of-nine shot attempts including three-of-three from three-point range to take an early 18-13 lead.
The Redhounds’ lead grew to 32-24 at halftime thanks to red-hot shooting from behind the three-point line. Trevor Hill hit two three-pointers in the first quarter and Jacob Maguet tallied two in the first half, as Corbin connected on six-of-eight shot attempts from behind the arc in the first half.
“I think the good thing is we’ve got a lot of kids that can shoot the ball,” Pietrowski said. “We’ve given them the green light to take the three-pointer when it’s there.
“We’re a very perimeter-oriented team, obviously, and the kids are doing a good job sharing the ball and when they do that I feel real confident when we shoot it.
“This is one of the better shooting teams I’ve had,” he added. “We’ve really got five kids that can really shoot the basketball. I feel like we have five players that can stroke it from the outside and Robbie (Igo) is doing a good job on the inside and we’ve got to get Taylor Waddle going down there a little bit. This is probably a little bit different team than we’ve had here at Corbin in a long time, but this is a fun team to coach and exciting team to watch.”
Pietrowski’s squad was challenged, though.
Despite only shooting nine-of-28 from the floor in the first half, Knoxville Catholic patiently chipped away at the Redhound lead. The Irish only trailed 46-42 going into the fourth quarter and that’s when Chris Cox took over.
Cox scored 10 points during the game’s final eight minutes and his basket underneath with 3:44 remaining in the game gave the Irish a 57-56 lead.
It marked the second straight game Corbin had fallen behind with less than four minutes left, but just like they did against Wayne County, the Redhounds answered the bell and pulled the game out by going on a 13-3 run to pick up the nine-point victory.
Robbie Igo ignited the run with two free throws while Farley and Maguet combined to score 10 points during the stretch to help their team wrap-up the win.
“I’m really pleased right now,” Pietrowski said. “We could easily be 0-2 right now with the teams we’ve played. The thing that excites me is that we’ve been down late in the game both times, but our kids didn’t hang their head and fought back and won. Being 2-0 is a great way to start the season.”
Pietrowski’s squad finished the game hitting 20-of-44 shot attempts and seven-of-14 from three-point range. Knoxville Catholic connected on 24-of-60 shot attempts from the floor and four-of-14 from behind the arc.
Corbin will try to continue its impressive play at home Tuesday against 13th Region rival Clay County.
“The biggest thing is that we’ve got to rebound with Clay County,” Pietrowski said. “It will be a good gauge for us. If we don’t hit the boards, it will be a long night for us.”
Corbin 69, Knoxville Catholic 60
Knoxville Catholic 13 13 16 18 60
Corbin 18 16 12 23 69
Knoxville Catholic (60) — Anders 17, Anderson 13, Irwin 6, Cox 24.
Corbin (69) — Farley 24, Maguet 14, Hill 10, Shelton 3, Igo 6, Grubb 5, Goins 7.