July 1, 2010
By Stephen Eckinger
Wooster Daily Record
Taggart Law Firm put the finishing touches on a perfect season Wednesday night.
After cruising through the league's regular season and the first two rounds of the postseason tournament, Taggart won the inaguaral championship game of the Dawg Days Summer League in convincing fashion, defeating Wenger Tax Service 89-69 at Village Green Park.
Leading the way for the winning squad were a couple of former Wayne County high school basketball standouts, each making their stamp on the game in separate halves.
Brandon Short, a graduate of Orrville, was the story in the first half. Short scored seven of Taggart's first 11 points to begin the game as opposing defenders labored to stay in front of him.
"My team was struggling a little bit," Short said,"and they look to me to bring us some scoring and some defense."
Short paced all scorers with 12 points in the first half and seemed to get inside the paint whenever he wanted.
"He is an absolutely ridiculous athlete," teammate Stephen Zacour said. "Once we get him in the open floor it's two points."
Zacour was the center of attention after halftime. After hitting just two shots in the opening half, the former Central Christian athlete went off for 17 second-half points.
"I was stiff to begin the game, but I didn't want to tell anybody," Zacour said. "We all started warming up by the end of the first half, though."
Zacour hit four 3-pointers in the second half. Two of his threes came back-to-back midway through the half and pushed Taggart's lead to 62-44.
"We've been winning when we get our runs going or stop other teams runs by hitting threes," Morgan Wenger said. "I hit a couple threes, but every time I hit one Stephen came down and answered back."
Wenger, the starting point guard on Wenger Tax Service, is also the league's director. He finished the game with 14 points, but he and his team didn't have enough gas to keep up with the eventual league champions.
"They got a lot of good players, but I thought we played really well in the first half to stick with them," Wenger said. "I told our guys at halftime that the first team to go on a big run was probably going to win the game."
"That team was them."
Taggart's went 8-0 during the four week regular season and went on to win their first two playoff games by a total of 75 points. They also featured the league's leading scorer, Daniel Zacour.
"They beat every team by 35 plus points at least once," Wenger said. "That tells you they were the prohibitive favorite."
Still, Wenger and his teammates were able to keep things close for the first half of the game. They trailed just 33-31 at halftime.
"For us to be down two at halftime tells me a lot about my team," Wenger said. "The second half things just snowballed."
Jordan Boak, a soon-to-be senior at Dalton High School, scored 10 second-half points for Wenger's squad. Boak hit a couple of threes late, but it wasn't enough to slow down the undefeated champions.
"They went on a run there, and we had a bunch of turnovers," Boak said. "We just didn't have enough to come back."
Five players on Taggart's ended the game in double digits. Stephen Zacour finished with 25 points, while Short poured in 18.
"We don't depend on one person," Short said. "Everybody can do a little bit of something. It just helps having a lot of versatile guys."
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