Now that's the way to rally from adversity.
The Greendale boys basketball team was handed a disappointing loss by Pius XI on Jan. 5 but bounced back in a big way with a 75-72 triumph over Pewaukee on Jan. 8, handing the Pirates their first loss of the season.
The Panthers bolted to a 47-28 halftime lead and then held off a strong Pewaukee comeback in the second half to improve to 4-2 in the Woodland Conference West Division and 8-3 overall.
'This victory was good for the kids, especially after the (Pius) loss,' coach Ryan Johnsen said. 'We played together as a team, and the kids were playing for each other. This shows we can play with anybody on our schedule.'
Especially if the Panthers execute the way they did in the first half.
'David Pulizos set the tone with his aggressiveness early,' the coach said. 'I thought Zach Harrison was outstanding on defense. We just played an outstanding first half, offensively and defensively. I knew Pewaukee would come back, though; they (the Pirates) have a lot of talent.'
The Pirates, who slipped to 10-1, did indeed rally behind a barrage of 3-point field goals.
'We had some turnovers, and Pulizos missed some of the second half with foul trouble,' Johnsen said. 'Pewaukee got within 2 or 3 points in the second half but never led.'
Pulizos finished with 22 points, 11 rebounds and four assists to pace the Panthers.
Clay Kujawa continued his solid play with 12 points and 17 rebounds; Nate Thomson tallied 19 points and five assists; and Vlado Zrnic added 14 points.
'Zrnic has been playing well, and that gives us another threat and more balance,' Johnsen said.
Greendale could not get its offense going against Pius XI in the earlier game last week.
'We struggled offensively all night,' Johnsen said. 'Pius turned it up on defense, took the lead and we never got back into it.'
Kujawa tallied a team-high 15 points; Pulizos and Matt Thelen 8 each; and Thomson 7 points for Greendale, which trailed 39-28 at the half.
The Panthers take on New Berlin West at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 15, at West in more Woodland West action.