Tuesday night in Dresden at the Dawg House, Coach Todd McLoughlin’s hustling Scotties held off a tall-timbered Philo cage quintet 56-50 to stay one game back of the Muskingum Valley League leaders – John Glenn (7-0) – in the conference standings with a 6-1 record.
The win sets the stage for this Friday night’s, Jan. 11 TV trip to New Concord, when Tri-Valley tackles their prep rival – and perennial MVL power – John Glenn, on the Muskies home hardwood.
Scottie junior scoring leader Keaton Williams’ sandwiched a rebound bucket and a traditional three-point play around a Jack Lyall trey, as the host Scotties jumped out to a quick 8-0 lead to open the Philo contest. But the Electrics – who boast one of the tallest line-ups in the area – bounced back to outscore the Dawgs 9-1 to close the first quarter, as the two MVL foes entered the second stanza deadlocked at 9-9.
Williams opened the second quarter with two charity tosses, but the Electrics countered with four straight, on a pair of fielders from Trey Lutz and Jackson Hargraves, for a 13-11 lead.
The Scotties tied the contest, but Philo’s Cody Butler drove through the lane for a lay-up, giving his team the lead again at 15-13 midway through the period, forcing a Coach Todd McLoughlin TV timeout to talk things over.
The ‘talk’ worked, as a Skye Bryan trey from the left corner gave the Scotties a lead they would not relinquish, spurring an 11-2 run that took the hosts to the halftime lockerrom up 24-17 over the visiting Electrics.
TV’s Keaton Williams followed up Bryan’s long shot with two straight lay-ups for the black and gold, then a pair of athletic drives to the rim from senior Matt King capped the decisive late first half run that put the host Scotties up for good.
Third quarter action saw balanced scoring from the Dawgs, led by Luke Lyall’s five counters that included a long trey from the talented, left-handed freshman, four points each from Williams and Jack Lyall, and lay-ups from Bryan and Smith, as the host black and gold were up 41-30 heading into the fourth quarter.
All seemed well in Scottieland to open the final eight minutes of regulation, as a pair of Bryan bunnies, a Ty Smith trey, and a Matt King strong drive for two through traffic gave Tri-Valley it’s peak lead of the game at 50-35 at the 4:31 mark.
But then the Electrics – coming off last year’s 15-win season and sectional title under first-year coach Greg Haberfield – charged back in a big way, going on an 11-1 tear, thanks to a pair of treys from Austin Bonifant, six points from 6’ 4” senior Hunter Moore, and six free throws and a fielder for eight points from 6’ 2” senior guard Cody Butler.
But it proved to be too little too late for the visitors, as a Matt King long-ball lay-up off an in-bounds pass from ‘QB’ Jack Lyall, then key free throws from Bryan and King, kept the Electrics at a safe distance, as the hosts took the important 56-50 win.
Balanced scoring saw the winners get 15 from Keaton Williams, ten points apiece from Bryan and King, nine counters from Jack Lyall, and seven from Luke Lyall.
Cody Butler’s game-high 17 points led Philo, who also got double figure scoring from Austin Binifant with 13, and eight apiece from 6’ 7” freshman A.J. Clayton, and Hunter Moore.
Coach Jeff Nezbeth’s Tri-Valley freshman cagers tipped off the triple-header evening of hardwood action, defeating visiting Lakewood, 41-27, and were led by Luke Hill’s 11 points, nine from Alex Williams, eight counters from Jason Pletcher, and seven from Drew Burkhart.
Braedyn Price’s 11 led Lakewood.
Coach Chris Garber’s Scottie junior varsity squad short-circuited the visiting Electric’s reserve squad by a 62-28 count, and were led in scoring by Jakob Frueh with 20 points, 13 counters from Jordan Pantaleo, and eight points apiece from Kaden Bay, and Luke Hill.
Owen Smith’s game-high 22 points paced the Philo JVs.