Raphael Alston put the Pioneers on the scoreboard with a 3-pointer just 17 seconds into the game. By making that shot, Marple Newtown was forced to move its defense out and take away some of the Pioneers' perimeter shooting. What that did was open up the low post for the rest of the Conestoga players.
"You can't survive on the outside shots," Fredrickson said. "Especially with our height advantage."
Conestoga moved the ball inside and jumped out to a 15-2 lead. With the exception of a free throw and 2 Alston 3-pointers, the 4 other baskets in that run were layups.
While Conestoga was having a surprisingly hot shooting night, the Tigers shooting percentage was nothing to boast about. Marple Newtown shot only 21 percent in the opening quarter.
"We've had a nice streak the last five games," said Marple Newtown coach
Vince Clark. "We've been playing some real fine games."
But even Clark was surprised by Conestoga's outburst at the game's start.
"You don't expect a team to come visit you and shoot like that," Clark said. "The lid was on for us, and (Conestoga) shot like they were at home."
But jumping out to a quick lead was important to Fredrickson.
"You're looking to get a good start when you're away from home," Fredrickson said. "You take the crowd out of the game."
The Pioneers' fast start didn't stop the Tigers from attempting a comeback.
In the first 4:29 of the second quarter, Marple Newtown reeled off a 12-6 run and was back in the game, trailing 23-19.
But 4 points was as close as Marple Newtown could get. The Pioneers pulled away near halftime with a 35-24 lead, outscoring the Tigers 10-3 in the last 2 minutes of the half.
"As soon as we got back in the ball game, our shot selection went down the tubes," Clark said.
Conestoga's man-to-man defense clogged up the middle of the lane, and Marple Newtown was forced to shoot from the perimeter. When the shots weren't falling from the outside, the Tigers started forcing passes down low, and turnovers were the result. The Tigers had 11 first-half turnovers.
In the third quarter, both teams traded baskets in the first 1:06, but Conestoga put the game out of reach when it scored 14 unanswered points for a 51-26 lead.
Matt Lenhard paced the Pioneers with 15 points, while Chris Perillo and Alston each chipped in 13. Chris Shelton's 10 points were combined with 11 rebounds for the Pioneers, who are 9-2 in the league and 11-6 overall.
Mark Prendergast led all scorers with 21 points and grabbed 9 rebounds for Marple Newtown. The Tigers are 4-7, 6-9.