ERIE – Riverdale’s defense smothered Stark County, as they rolled to a 54-29 win in each teams opener at the 16th annual Warkins Cardinal Classic.

Blake DeClercq poured in 22 points for the Rams, including 13 in the third quarter. Brett Murphy added 10, including three treys, all before halftime. 

Riverdale used a couple of different trapping presses that Stark County had no answer for. 

The Rebels turned the ball over 12 times in the opening eight minutes and trailed 14-4 after one period. 

The Rams forced 10 more turnovers in the second frame, as the Rebels trailed 32-10 at the intermission. Stark County finished the game with 32 turnovers in total. 

Riverdale led 49-21 after three, and added an early basket in the fourth to push the lead to 30 and ignite the running clock. 

The Rebels were able to outscore the Rams 8-5 over the final eight minutes.

Payton Browning topped the Rebels with 11 points, eight of which came in the second half.