ERIE — Cam Miller is a grinder.
Holy Family's heart and soul has earned his stripes for coach Pete Villecco's team over the years, going from a guy with limited minutes to a starter this season.
He is thriving, and is usually at his very best when presented a lofty challenge. On Friday night, that test came in the form of Erie's 6-foot-9 Cameron McCurry, who had a good six inches on Miller.
"I love the challenge, and any post I play in this league is bigger, so I've kind of gotten used to it," Miller said.
It didn't faze him or the rest of the visiting Tigers, who roared defensively and blew out Erie 81-35 to stay perfect in the Tri-Valley League and set up a biggie on Tuesday night at home against Mead.
"Cam is special and he is our heart and soul," said Holy Family coach Pete Villecco, whose team improved to 17-4 overall and a flawless 12-0 in the TVL. "His motor is something I've never seen before and it is fun to watch him compete."
Holy Family, which handled Erie by 20 at home last month, put the home-standing Tigers in a hole early, and a deep one at that.
Sophomore Kyle Helbig, with his older brother Chris on hand to watch, scored nine of his game-high 19 points in a 24-8 opening quarter that set the tone for the evening.
Holy Family dominated the board, limited McCurry's quality looks and forced Erie to make contested shots, which weren't dropping.
"That's the one good thing about our squad, is we don't underestimate anybody and we prepare hard for everybody," said Miller, who finished with 12 points and 11 rebounds. "We don't take a game off and I think that is what is really special about this team."
Erie (10-11 overall, 6-6 in the TVL) just couldn't get anything going on the offensive end, as much as coach Scott Melin tried different rotations, it just never came together.
Erie was lead by Luke Loy's eight points, and McCurry, who came in averaging over 13 per game, was held to just seven points.
"McCurry is a good player, and he hurt us in the first game (with 14 points)," Villecco said, "And we wanted Cam to work his tail off to limit his catches."
Every regular on the Holy Family roster scored on Friday night and after Helbig's 19 and Miller's 12, the Tigers got nine off the bench from Dylan Hunter and eight from Joe Golter.
Holy Family, to its credit, didn't get caught looking ahead to Tuesday night against Mead. The Mavericks stayed a game back with a thorough throttling of Windsor at home on Friday night.
"We just didn't talk about it and in practice we prepared really hard for Erie," Villecco said. "Our kids are smart kids and a focused group, so we had to take care of tonight."
HOLY FAMILY 81, ERIE 35
HOLY FAMILY (17-4, 12-0)
Dominic Nellis 2 1-1 5, Kyle Helbig 6 6-6 19, Joe Golter 4 0-0 8, Tanner Baird 2 2-2 6, Jonathan Pfenning 1 0-0 2, Wega Kinoti 3 0-0 6, Aaron Sanders 3 0-0 7, Tanner Price 1 0-0 2, Michael Zeman 1 0-0 3, Dorian Jackson 1 0-0 2, Cameron Miller 5 2-3 12, Dylan Hunter 3 3-6 9, Adam Jolly 0 0-0 0. Totals 34 14-18 81.
ERIE (10-11, 6-6)
Tyler Larson 0 0-0 0, Ethyn Tyson 1 0-0 3, Taran Black 0 0-0 0, Luke Loy 3 2-2- 8, Jeffrey Farineau 2 1-2 5, Jadon Lucero 1 0-0 3, Noah Roper 1 2-2 4, Alex Mathis 0 1-2 1, Garrett Mayers 1 0-0 2, William Campbell 1 0-0 2, Cameron McCurry 2 3-4 7. Totals 12 9-12 35.
Score by quarters:Holy Family 24 16 22 19 — 81
Erie 8 9 5 13 — 35
3-point field goals — Holy Family (3): Helbig, Sanders, Zeman; Erie (2): Tyson, Lucero. Total fouls — Holy Family 14; Erie 16.