By Phil Anastasia
It was a strange game -- frenetic, foul-filled, flow-less.
"Chaos," Pitman coach Kevin Crawford said of much of the action. "It was like football."
"Stop-and-go, stop-and-go," Penns Grove coach Damian Ware said.
No player was a smooth operator in Thursday night's rough-and-tumble Tri-County Conference clash between rivals Pitman and Penns Grove.
But Pitman senior guard Darnell Foreman (pictured) found a way to flourish in leading the Panthers to a 65-53 victory over the visiting Red Devils.
"Games like this, he's needed," Crawford said. "He's a fish in water. He can scrap with the best of them."
A clever left-hander, Foreman generated 26 points and eight rebounds. He was 15-for-18 from the foul line, lifted two steals and blocked two shots.
Pitman (13-2), the No. 4 team in The Inquirer Top 10, also got strong work from junior forward Tim Delaney (13 points, eight rebounds) and senior forward Tyler Wisniewski (17 points, nine rebounds) in bouncing back from a disappointing loss to Schalick on Tuesday night.
"We couldn't sleep after that one," the 6-foot-2 Foreman said of the loss. "But it was good that our next game was Penns Grove. It was the perfect opponent for us to have."
Senior guard Laqwin Stewart scored 14 with four steals and three assists for Penns Grove (10-3), which had won nine in a row.
Ten players scored for Penns Grove in the physical game before a large, animated crowd at Pitman.
"We kept fighting to the end," Ware said. "It came down to who hit shots. We were 3-for-18 in the first half, and you can't do that against a great team like Pitman."
Penns Grove handed Pitman its first loss by a 59-57 score on Jan. 4. Foreman said that result was a big motivator for the Panthers.
"We couldn't wait to get another shot at them," Foreman.
Pitman played without senior guard Eric Stafford, a Lafayette recruit. Stafford sprained his ankle Monday in practice.
"He's such a great decision-maker for us," Crawford said of Stafford. "The other guys had to step up and tonight they did."
Foreman scored nine in the second quarter as Pitman took a 27-17 halftime lead. He buried a three-pointer off a nice feed from Delaney to give the Panthers a 41-24 edge late in the third quarter.
The fourth quarter was one trip to the foul line after another. Foreman was 6-for-6 from the line in the final eight minutes.
Pitman ended up 28-for-38 in free throws, while Penns Grove was 16-for-28.
"We needed this win," Foreman said. "We knew it would be a rough game. But we found a way to win."
Penns Grove 10 7 16 20 -- 53
Pitman 13 14 16 22 -- 65
PG: Laqwin Stewart 14, Tristan Lloyd 8, Kyle Goodson 11, Jermane Carter 1, Davon Davis 6, Steve Sanchez 2, Allen Killebrew 2, Avery Killebrew 2, Dahkin Seals 5, Kylee Ridgeway
P: Tim Delaney 13, Darnell Foreman 26, Tyler Wisniewski 17, Matt Spicer 4, Dave Collinsworth 2, Michael Gibson 3.
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