Josh Earley plays against his brother for the first time as Bishop Miege routes Southeast by 29

Bishop Miege sophomore Josh Earley dunks home two of his eight points in the Stags' 29-point victory.
Bishop Miege sophomore Josh Earley dunks home two of his eight points in the Stags’ 29-point victory.

Midway through the third quarter Josh Earley went up for a layup and was fouled hard and took a tumble.

As Earley lay down on the floor, his aggressor stood over him and starred him down without helping him up before his Bishop Miege teammates rushed over to put the 6-foot-7 sophomore back on his feet.

It wasn’t a sign of disrespect, but more of putting Earley in his place. After all, it was his brother Jason — a junior — who committed the foul.

For Josh, it was the first time he played against Jason in a setting that wasn’t the driveway. The two played together in middle school.

“Every time we play against each other it’s a pretty big competition,” Earley said. “I’m better playing with him, but it’s different playing against him.”

When the two went through the handshake line after Miege’s 73-44 victory over Southeast, they didn’t say anything to each other and would leave the discussion to when they got home.

Josh scored eight points as Miege ran out to a 26-7 first quarter lead and didn’t look back. Coach Rick Zych didn’t think Josh and Jordan’s father was looking forward to the game.

“We needed a game and I respect (Southeast coach Daryl Kearney) to say, ‘Hey, we’ll play you,” Zych said.

Zych was pleased with the effort overall as they were able to push the ball up the floor, but thinks his team can be better, especially in taking care of the ball as they turned it over 16 times.

Part of the reason was Zych was rotating his lineup frequently. He played eight players in the first half and that doesn’t include Semaj Ray, who sat out with an ankle injury he sustained in the first game of the Coffeyville tournament last week. Ray will be back tomorrow against Mill Valley.

“We had different combinations we’ve never had,” Zych said. “It’s that kind of game. It got out of hand early and we’re just trying to get them to play hard and make good decisions.” Zych was pleased with the defensive outing as they wanted to hold Southeast to less than 50 points. He didn’t think if the running clock went into effect in the fourth quarter if they would reach that goal. He thought his team looked tired and decided they’ll hold a short practice today. When they take the court tomorrow against the Jaguars, it will be the Stags’ fifth game in seven days — a fourth of the season in a week. They played five games in the first six weeks of the season.

Before the game, Zych talked to his team about Kansas City Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura’s death as a means of not taking today for granted.

“Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed,” Zych said. “Stay together, this is a brotherhood. Think about your teammates. We only get to do this 20 times; 25 if we’re lucky. Let’s share the moments we have together.”

Francesco Badocchi led Miege with 16 points, Ezekial Lopes poured in 11, Jeremiah Robinson-Earl scored 10 and Jeremiah Garrett added eight off the bench.