VANDALIA — The Piqua boys basketball team had what it wanted Friday night in its Vandalia D-I sectional tournament opener.
Piqua got as close as five in the fourth quarter, but fifth seed Centerville held on for a 44-29 victory.
“We didn’t play a slow tempo just to hold the ball,” Piqua coach Heath Butler said. “It was more just to avoid wearing ourselves out chasing through screens all night. We wanted to be within striking distance in the fourth quarter.”
After trailing 33-22 after three quarters, Piqua closed within five early in the fourth quarter.
“We had our chance,” Butler said. “Give Centerville credit. They call timeout and settled down and put a nice run together at that point.”
The game had started with Piqua taking a 4-2 lead after the first quarter.
“It wasn’t by design,” Butler said. “I wasn’t expecting to be 4-2. But, to have the advantage on the fifth seed, we felt good about that. We missed four free throws and a couple layups in the quarter, so we missed our opportunity to gain an advantage on them. Centerville was a little rattled.”
The Elks recovered to take a 22-13 halftime lead and stretch it to 33-22 after three quarters.
“We were within five or six most of the second quarter,” Butler said. “Then, they hit a deep three right before half.”
Nate Monnin and Ben Schmiesing led Piqua with 10 points each.
The Indians finished 8-15, winning three of their last four and four of their last week.
“It (the record) doesn’t show how good we were,” Butler said. “We had some nice wins at the end. I think there was a lot of growth on this team. The seniors can build on what we did this year and be successful in life. Sometimes, when you are a small Division I school like us, you play a really tough schedule. I feel really good about what we were able to accomplish this season.”
Right to the very end.
CLAYTON — The Versailles boys basketball team pulled away in the second half to open Northmont D-III sectional play with a 65-35 win over Milton-Union Friday night.
Versailles, 22-1, will play Greenon at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in second round action.
AJ Ahrens and Justin Ahrens led Versailles with 14 points each .
Austin Knapke scored 13 points and Alex Wendel added 10.
The Covington boys basketball team opened Piqua D-IV sectional tournament action with a 48-40 win over Ansonia Friday.
The Buccs will play Jackson Center at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Kenny Atkins, Jayce Pond and Trevor Miller all scored 13 points for Covington.
The Bradford boys basketball team had its season end Piqua D-IV sectional tournament play with a 72-44 loss to second seed Fairlawn.
The Railroaders finished the season 2-21.
Parker Smith scored 13 points and Dialaquan Millhouse added 12.
win in OT
CLAYTON — Looks like the Vikings are at it again.
Miami East — which has a long history of tournament upsets under head coach Allen Mack — stunned Stivers in overtime Saturday in a Division III sectional opener at Northmont High School. Stivers was the No. 5 seed in the sectional, while Miami East came in as the No. 14 seed.
“This was our biggest win of the season,” Mack said. “All of our kids stepped up and contributed.”
Miami East took an early lead and almost the entire game until Stivers was able to catch up with just 2 minutes to play in regulation. Stivers would take a 49-47 lead near the end of regulation, but the Vikings’ Logan West hit a pair of free throws to send the game into overtime.
Stivers took the lead in overtime, but Austin Kearns hit a free throw to tie the game at 52. He missed his second free throw, but West was there to grab the rebound and hit the putback to give the Vikings the 54-52 lead. East then was able to hold off a pair of scoring attempts by Stivers in the final seconds for the victory.
West had a monster night, finishing with 29 points and 16 rebounds. He went an astonishing 10 of 11 from the field and 9 of 14 from the free throw line, including 7 of 8 in the fourth quarter.
“That was his biggest game of the season,” Mack said.
Miami East moves on to the sectional semifinals, where it will play Northeastern at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at Northmont.
fall to Triad
Lehman saw its season come to an end Saturday night, the Cavs unable to duplicate their regular-season win over Triad in a 67-62 setback in Piqua D-IV sectional tournament play.
The Cavs finish the season with a 10-13 record.
Dylan Arnold had 22 for the Cavaliers, Kameron Lee added 18 and Jared Rourke finished with 11.
As expected, the top-seeded Russia Raiders had no trouble with a young Mechanicsburg team in first-round sectional action Saturday, rolling into the semifinals with an 85-23 victory.
to tourney win
The Russia boys basketball team coasted to an 85-23 win over Mechanicsburg in Piqua D-IV sectional action Saturday.
The Raiders go to 17-5 on the season and will play Houston at 6 p.m. Wednesday.
Russia sprinted to a 23-3 lead after a quarter and made it 45-10 at the half. All nine full-time varsity players were on the court in the first quarter.
Ten players scored for Russia. Hunter Cohee led the way with 15, Cole Tebbe had 12, and Ethan Monnier and Jack Dapore 11 apiece.
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