NEW BOSTON — The New Boston Tigers were sure glad to be back in Homer Pellegrinon Gymnasium on Tuesday.
With a 70-37 win over visiting West Union in the home opener, New Boston improves to 3-0 — having played just one conference game at this stage in the 2020-21 season.
Forcing 21 turnovers thanks to their patented press in the 33-point win, Tigers coach Adam Cox said he felt as if the turning point was his team’s defensive start to the second half.
After surrendering 75 points in their road win over Green on Friday, defense became a focus that amounted to NB surrendering just 15 second-half points.
In the first seven minutes and 15 seconds of the third quarter, New Boston held West Union to just two points — the longest scoring drought of the game by either team.
“If we talk and rotate and we really get after it in our press, it’s very effective,” Cox said. “When we stand and we’re flat-footed and we let them ball-reversal to get to the middle, then it’s very susceptible to giving up layups which you saw in the first half. Then we made some adjustments at half, really got after it in the third quarter, which I thought was a big changing point in the game.”
Tigers senior Kyle Sexton had a game-high 20 points on eight field goals, as he and fellow senior Chase Clark combined for 20 of New Boston’s 30 rebounds.
Sexton also connected on the Tigers’ lone made three-pointer as the Dragons hit three, each of which came from leading scorer Cameron Campbell, who had 15.
Clark scored all of his six points in the first quarter, while fellow seniors Tanner Voiers and De’Von Jones had five and eight, respectively.
Junior Grady Jackson also scored in double digits, totaling 10 points on five made field goals.
Tanner’s off-scoring night helped benefit junior brother Brady Voiers to a career-high in scoring.
While the Dragons defended Tanner in attempt to limit his production, four of his six assists came on Brady’s field goals — as the younger Voiers was second in the game’s scoring with 17.
“I thought we got our wheels turning in the second half and really started sharing the ball,” Cox said. “We’ve got to make sure that we’re consistent through four quarters. We practice to average 25 points a quarter, and we do drills in practice daily to try and see how many shots we can get up on our possessions.”
Tuesday’s win was New Boston’s 10th straight home victory — a streak dating back to their home finale versus Eastern on Feb. 8, 2019 at the tail end of the 2018-19 season.
The Tigers finished 9-0 in home contests a year ago — as part of their 23-2 campaign.
It was also the first game inside Homer Pellegrinon Gymnasium since COVID-19 restrictions have put a limit on the number of fans which can attend each contest.
Although the Tigers’ den is usually loud, fiery and at capacity crowd, those in attendance Tuesday supporting NB were treated to yet another home win to add to their home streak.
“We expect to defend our den — every time someone comes in here, we expect to win,” Cox said. “We guarantee that when we play here, we’re going to play with more passion, more fire than on the road.”
Cox’s group will travel to Wellston on Friday (Dec. 18) for its second non-league contest of the week, seeking to continue its unbeaten start.
NB will then host Whiteoak on Saturday in a rematch of last year’s Division IV sectional final game, which saw the Tigers triumph 43-40.
West Union 11 11 8 7 — 37
New Boston 18 13 18 21 — 70
WEST UNION 37
Clayton Jones 2 0-0 4, Jaimichael Knox 0 0-2 0, Briant Hunt 1 0-0 2, Aiden Weeks 0 0-0 0, Braxton Blanton 5 0-0 10, Braxton Shoemaker 0 0-0 0, Bobby Gallowitz 2 0-2 4, Cameron Campbell 5 2-2 15, Chase Taylor 0 0-0 0, Chris Steed 1 0-0 2; TOTALS 16 2-6 37; Three-point field goals: 3 (Cameron Campbell 3)
NEW BOSTON 70 (3-0)
De’Von Jones 3 2-2 8, Grady Jackson 5 0-0 10, Tanner Voiers 2 1-1 5, Josh Tabor 0 0-0 0, Kage Truitt 0 0-0 0, Kyle Sexton 8 3-6 20, Levi Bowman 0 2-2 2, Mike McGraw 0 0-0 0, Josh Alley 0 0-0 0, Chase Clark 2 2-2 6, Brady Voiers 6 5-8 17, Hunter Easter 1 0-0 2; TOTALS 27 15-21 70; Three-point field goals: 1 (Kyle Sexton 1)
Reach Jacob Smith at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1930, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter @JacobSmithPDT © 2020 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved