Scranton senior Marcus Bauman and West Scranton sophomore Brandon Barnes can each manage playing elsewhere on the floor.
Opportunism and necessity, however, will likely put them right in the center of tonight’s NEPABasketball.com/WQMY TV broadcast of the West Scranton at Scranton boys basketball game.
Their battle in the middle is the Maddock Insurance Agency Marquee Matchup of the Game.
The 6-foot-5 Bauman can play either forward spot or center and has the athleticism to attack defenses from the high post, low post or perimeter as well as in transition.
The 6-foot-1 Barnes figured he was headed toward time at power forward and center. When the Invaders lost players at both spots to injury, the sophomore was pressed into full-time center duty on an undersized team.
Barnes’ ability to adapt has helped keep West Scranton competitive in the paint while playing the whole season without 6-5 Jalen Gregory, the team’s top returning scorer, and much of it without Nick Gioia.
After scoring 15 points in a 72-61 win over North Pocono to open the Lackawanna League schedule Wednesday night, Barnes is averaging more than 9 points per game, third-best on the team.
The sophomore has stood up to challenges during the Invaders’ 5-4 start and he is likely to face another tonight.
Bauman is the leader of a Scranton team that is 0-1 in the Lackawanna and 4-5 overall going into the Division 1 matchup.
The team leader in scoring at 16.6 points per game and rebounding at 9.4, Bauman is the likely focal point of the Scranton offense as it looks to exploit a height advantage. If he draws enough attention from the West Scranton defense, Bauman has also shown the ability to find open teammates, including Scranton’s young threats from beyond the 3-point arc.
Analyzing the progress of the Maddock Insurance Agency Marquee Matchup will be one of the features of the live television broadcast, which is a combined effort of the first of My TV, WQMY-TV Channel 53 and NEPABasketball.com.
WQMY can found over the air and on satellite providers at Channel 53.
It is available on local cable providers Comcast (Channel 811), Service Electric Wilkes-Barre (504), Service Electric Hazleton (508), Blue Ridge Cable (16 or 617).
MORE ON TV SCHEDULE: Check out the complete NEPABasketball.com/My TV broadcast schedule for District 2 games this season. http://www.nepabasketball.com/2018-19/articles/TVSchedule.