Bobcats withstand Eagles, 63-61


Lady ‘Cats, Waverly girls show strength

BOYS BASKETBALL

Thursday (12/28)

Green 63, Reedsville Eastern 61

An out of conference matchup between Reedsville Eastern and Green gave the Bobcats all they could handle on Thursday night.

In the end, Green got themselves a victory, knocking off the Eagles 63-61.

Early in the contest, the Bobcats got off to a slow start, prompting head coach Dirk Hollar to call for a timeout.

“We came out ugly again,” Hollar said. “They took a 10 point lead in the first two minutes, I called a timeout and I think I got the message across because we came out defensively and got after them.”

After one, Eastern would lead 17-9.

The second quarter saw Green take significant strides towards capturing some momentum.

Sparked by 15 points from Tanner Kimbler and 7 from Tayte Carver, the Bobcats took a 32-29 lead into the locker room.

Kimbler finished with a team-high 25 points, hitting six three-pointers in the process. Carver added 14 points for Green in the game.

Ultimately, the second quarter run was the difference in a tightly contested battle between the two schools.

“That run right there got us back in it and from there it was all about defending and playing physical,” Hollar said. “It was a lot better effort but we know it’s gotta improve on the defensive end if we want to compete with the top teams in our league.”

In the second half, both teams continued to go right at each other.

After three quarters were in the books, the Bobcats boasted a 46-43 lead.

With just one quarter remaining, Green was able to get just enough to secure the victory. Carver hit two clutch free throws to help capture the win for the Bobcats.

Green got a big lift from Gage Sampson as well, who was “sick as a dog” according to Hollar. Sampson would total 12 points, and had some big free throws of his own late in the game as well.

Hollar also noted a solid performance from Rylee Maynard off the bench. Maynard had just four points, but was “everywhere defensively, rotating on D and doing the little things we preach,” Hollar said.

Rounding out the scoring, Zach Huffman had six points and Caden Blizzard added two.

Next up for the Bobcats is a meeting with South Gallia at home on Saturday.

GIRLS BASKETBALL

Thursday (12/28)

Green 48, Ashton (W. Va.) Hannan 35

Behind a game-high 17 points from Leslie Gallion and yet another strong performance from freshman Kame Sweeney — who had 14 of her own — the Green Bobcats’ girls basketball program closed out the month of December by taking home its second win in a row and its third victory in ‘17-‘18 with a 48-35 victory over Ashton (W. Va.) Hannan on Thursday evening in Hannan.

Gallion, who broke out with one of, if not her very best, game of the year, scored 12 of her 17 points in the opening half of play as the Lady ‘Cats obtained an 11-5 lead by the end of the opening period and never looked back en route to leading at all stops. Sweeney then picked up the load in the second half by adding 12 of her 14 tallies in the final two stanzas of action.

Peyton Gaffney’s eight, Kim Brown’s five, and four combined tallies from Ava Jenkins and Logan Jones rounded out the scoring for the Lady ‘Cats, who will carry positive momentum heading into a Jan. 4 SOC I matchup against Clay in Franklin Furnace. Hannan was led by Bailey Tolliver’s 13 and Bailey Coleman’s 10.

Waverly 43, Piketon 34

Behind a well-balanced effort in the Pike County Holiday Classic Championship Game, John Bonifield’s Waverly Lady Tigers emerged with the 2017 PCHC Championship as Waverly defeated rival Piketon, 43-34, in Thursday evening’s title game that was played at Western High School in Latham.

At the beginning of the affair, both teams battled to a 10-10 tie after the opening quarter of play as the Lady Redstreaks and the Lady Tigers took their shots at the lead.

But as has been the case in most of Waverly’s victories in 2017, it was the long-distance connections that helped fuel the fire for the Lady Tigers. Morgan Wiseman and Hailey Robinson, who combined for 24 points during the contest, connected on three three-point field goals apiece — including two each in the first half of play — as Waverly gapped Piketon, 16-6, in the second quarter.

“Morgan and Hailey made some huge threes in the second quarter and we were able to build a lead going into halftime,” Bonifield said. “We got a little sloppy at the end of the game but we’re young and still learning how to win. I’m so proud of this team and our effort.”

The Lady Tigers then fended off the Lady Redstreaks from there behind the play of Zoiee Smith, who obtained 14 points, seven rebounds, and four assists while leading the team in the former and latter categories.

“This was a great team win tonight,” Bonifield said. “We played as hard as we have all year and it’s nice to win the championship, especially for our seniors, Morgan, Kiara (Smith), and Shaylee (Heistad). Piketon is a well coached team and always are sound defensively. Our goal was to play better defense heading into the tournament and I believe the girls responded the last two nights. We had a mindset to make them earn every point and not give up easy baskets.”

Piketon was led by 11 points from Grace Lightle, who put together eight tallies in the first half alone. Brianna Odel, Avery Reuter, and Ally Ritchie added seven, seven, and six points, respectively, while Ally Crothers and Cami Alexander combined for four points in the balanced scoring effort. Odel obtained all seven of her points in the opening half of action.

The Lady Redstreaks will travel to Northwest on Saturday while the Lady Tigers will wait until the following Thursday to return to the floor when they host South Webster.

Vinton County 53, South Webster 40

Despite getting additional strong play from Ellie Jo Johnson, who obtained a double-double (21 points, 10 rebounds), and Madison Cook, who added 11 points and five rebounds onto that total, the South Webster Jeeps’ girls basketball program fell to a tough Vinton County squad by a 53-40 count on Thursday evening in McArthur.

Johnson, who continued to be a pest on both ends of the floor, obtained two assists, a steal, and a block in addition to her 21-point, 10-rebound effort, while Cook collected two assists of her own in the affair along with her aforementioned numbers.

Kaylee Hadinger, Baylee Cox, and Rose Stephens combined to obtain eight points, eight rebounds, and four assists, while Avery Zempter, who took on the role of primary distributor during the affair, collected a strong six assists while obtaining two points to round out the main contributors.

South Webster (8-4) will play at Waverly on Jan. 4 in its return to SOC II action.

Wednesday (12/27)

Waverly 61, Eastern 32

Before its championship-winning effort on Thursday evening in the Pike County Holiday Showcase, Waverly used another outstanding shooting display from Morgan Wiseman and a brilliant showing from Zoiee Smith to claim a 61-32 victory over the Eastern Eagles on Wednesday evening in Latham.

Wiseman, who had already amounted a high of 32 points earlier in the season, put on a fantastic display by draining all six of her three-pointers in the second and third quarters alone. She scored 16 of Waverly’s 24 second quarter points — exactly two-thirds of the team total in the period — by draining four treys in the aforementioned frame alone. Smith, meanwhile, was consistent throughout, scoring 12 points in the first half and 11 in the second en route to her 23-point output while opening the floor up for Wiseman.

“Our defense was able to create turnovers and this enabled us to get out into transition,” Waverly head coach John Bonifield said. “Zoiee did an excellent job attacking the seams of the zone and making great decisions. She was able to find Morgan for open looks. Morgan caught fire and we kept giving her the basketball.”

Kami and Carli Knight, who obtained 12 points, 13 rebounds, and four steals combined, rounded out the main contributors in the Lady Tigers’ lineup, with the former gobbling up 10 rebounds on her own to finish the job. Eastern was led by Andrea Lester’s 14 points and Paige Carter’s nine tallies.

Lady ‘Cats, Waverly girls show strength

Reach Benjamin Spicer at (502)264-7318 on Twitter @BSpicerPDT or at Facebook.com/ReporterBenSpicer

Reach Benjamin Spicer at (502)264-7318 on Twitter @BSpicerPDT or at Facebook.com/ReporterBenSpicer