West Allis - Defense and rebounding keyed a 52-32 victory for the West Allis Hale boys basketball team over Oak Creek on Friday night, but the offense wasn't bad, either.
'Our defensive effort was outstanding, and we did a pretty good job of rebounding,' head coach John Palesse said. 'We started out hitting our shots and continued throughout the game, shooting 53 percent overall and 4 of 5 from 3-point range.
'What was nice is that we didn't fall in love with the 3-pointers and we continued to work for good shots.'
The Huskies improved to 2-0 on the season and have allowed only 55 points in the two games.
They started well against the Knights, building a halftime advantage of 28-14 and not letting Oak Creek get much closer in the second half.
Travis Balcerzak tallied a game-high 21 points and Derrick Waller added 18 points. Both also pulled down six rebounds to lead the Huskies.
Arthur Arena added five rebounds and led the strong defensive effort, Palesse said.
'It has been a great start to the season,' the coach said. 'The entire team is contributing to our success. It has been neat watching our hard work pay off with some wins, and I anticipate that our guys will continue to work hard and build on our initial success.'
The competition began getting tougher this week. Hale meets Shorewood of the Woodland Conference on Tuesday and will open Greater Metro Conference action at 7:30 p.m. Friday at home against Marquette.
The Huskies then travel to West Allis Central for the first intercity showdown of the season at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 11. The game will follow a Hale-Central girls contest at 6 p.m.