By Rob Kiser
WAPAKONETA — The Piqua boys basketball team recovered from a slow start to take the lead into the fourth quarter.
But, the Indians managed just two points in the first six minutes of the fourth quarter and lost to Wapakoneta 64-53 in non-conference action on the road.
Piqua had to overcome a 12-0 deficit in the first two minutes.
While the Indians turned it over on their first four possessions, Wapakoneta hit four 3-pointers — two by Nick Schoonover and two by Nate Schroer.
The Indians still trailed 22-13 after one quarter, but began to get back in the game in the second quarter.
After Nate Monnin scored nine points in the opening quarter, Ben Schmiesing had a big second quarter for Piqua.
He hit two 3-pointers and scored 10 points in the quarter as Piqua closed within 36-31 at the halftime break.
It then looked like Piqua was taking over in the third quarter.
Monnin scored twice inside, then buried a three to put Piqua with 39-38.
With 3:40 remaining in the quarter, Gage Smith drilled a three to give Piqua its first lead at 41-39.
A basket by Ben Schmiesing inside and a baseline jumper by Devon Brown put Piqua up 45-39.
But, just as quickly, Wapakoneta turned things back its way.
The Redskins scored the final four points of the third quarter to get within 45-44.
Schmiesing had a basket early in the fourth quarter to get Piqua back within 48-47, but the Indians could only manage six points the rest of the way, all in the final two minutes.
Monnin led Piqua with 20 points and eight rebounds, while Schmiesing added 16 points and five rebounds.
Wapak was led by Jace Copeland with 17 points.
Aaron Good scored 11, Kyle Hoffman had 10 and Schoonover and Schroer both finished with eight.
Piqua was 20 of 39 from the floor for 51 percent and nine of 13 from the line for 69 percent, while Wapakoneta was 21 of 43 from the floor for 49 percent and 15 of 21 from the line for 71 percent.
Piqua won the battle of the boards 23-17, but had 17 turnovers to Wapakoneta’s 10.
Piqua will open GWOC North play Friday, hosting Vandalia-Butler.
Hunter Hawk 0-0-0, Kaleb Patton 2-2-6, Gage Smith 2-2-7, Nate Monnin 8-3-20, Ben Schmiesing 6-2-16, Xion Harrison 0-0-0, Hayden Schrubb 1-0-2, Devon Brown 1-0-2, JJ Rohrbach 0-0-0, Nick Rigola 0-0-0. Totals: 20-9-53.
Nick Schoonover 2-2-8, Mike Burton 1-0-2, Jace Copeland 5-5-17, Kyle Hoffman 5-0-10, Nate Schroer 2-2-8, Aaron Good 3-4-11, Gage Schenk 2-2-6, Adam Scott 1-0-2. Totals: 21-15-64.
3-point field goals — Piqua: Smith, Monnin, Schmiesing (2). Wapakoneta: Schoonover (2), Copeland (2), Schroer (2), Good.
Score By Quarters
Piqua 13 31 45 53
Wapakoneta 22 36 44 64
Records: Piqua 0-1, Wapakoneta 1-0.
Rob Kiser is the Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.