There’s a new standard at Moline.
The Maroons (6-0) unleashed it on Quincy on Friday at Wharton Field House, holding the Blue Devils to 13 first-half points and only three in the second quarter.
The final, a 62-28 Moline win, was Quincy’s worst loss in Western Big Six history. It was the conference opener for both teams.
The final really could have been worse as Moline once led 54-15 late in the third quarter and played subs the entire fourth.
“It was a lot of fun,” said Moline’s Deonte Billups who led the way with 17 points and 10 rebounds, even though he sat at least 10 minutes of the game. “We got all of our players in. Everyone got a lot of minutes, so it was really fun for our whole team.”
Moline hit Quincy with an intensity that really did not quit until most of the Maroon starters were out late in the third quarter.
“We knew that Aaron (Quincy starting guard Shoot) was going to be out,” said Billups. “But we still wanted to play to our standards. We wanted to push the ball a lot. We didn’t want to have a lot of turnovers. We wanted to break the zone a lot. So we pushed it every time we can.”
Moline also got 13 points from role player extraordinaire Drew Wiemers, who had 13 points and five rebounds, and Brody Harding, who added 12 points.
Moline’s aggressive match-up zone and its rebounding were huge parts of the story as the Maroons forced 12 first-half turnovers while committing six of their own in building the 36-10 halfitme edge.
“I think obviously getting off to a quick start really helped,” said Moline coach Sean Taylor. “Our defense was really good, but the best part about our defense was we rebounded the ball really well.
“I thought Deonte, Jeff (McInnis, who had five rebounds), and Drew rebounded tremendously. Then we got out in transition and got some easy buckets and then made a couple 3s.
“It caused them to spread the zone, and when they do that, there’s a lot of holes and our guys were smart enough and good enough to exploit those.”
McInnis added six points, a number matched by Grant DeTaeye on two 3s in the fourth quarter. Quincy had just one player, Ben Amos with 10 points, in double figures. Jacob Ary did add eight points. Shoot, it should be noted, is one of their top scorers.
Quincy coach Andy Douglas said the game was “frustrating,” for the Blue Devils (3-1).
“Frustrating doesn’t do it justice,” he added. “It was sloppy for us. Credit to Moline. They did a really good job of taking us out of what we wanted to do offensively. That was about as stagnant as I’ve seen our guys in the four years that I’ve been here.”
Douglas is in his second year coaching the varsity after two years assisting.
“It was one of those games,” he said.
"I thought our balance was really good," Taylor said, adding he was pleased that the Maroons did not rest on the lead.
"We've talked about that," he said. "Play to a standard. And I think our guys are better and doing a great job of that."