Winter has far from set in on the fields of northwest Ohio, but that early chill came in the form of frigid field goal shooting at Evergreen High School as the Viking boys basketball team dropped a pair of home games to Patrick Henry, 45-39 and Ayersville, 44-22 over the weekend.
Against the Patriots, Evergreen broke away from a 4-4 tie at the end of the first quarter, using a couple of Nick Etue baskets and one more from Phoenix VanOstrand to take an 11-7 lead with 4:17 left in the opening half.
That’s when the Vikes missed four straight layups and only scored three points in the next nine minutes, those on an Alec Truckor three pointer early in the third quarter, as PH came back to take as much as a 13-point lead.
Jeremy Schoch scored on a line drive bank from the foul line and then a three-point play on the offensive glass in the first half to help the Patriots regain a 16-11 halftime lead.
Then it was Jared Nelson in the third quarter with a three-point play on a fastbreak and a triple to increase the PH lead to 29-16 with 1:39 left in the third.
Freshman Chandler Lumbrezer’s three-point play and Peyton Pawlaczyk’s bank shot got Evergreen back within eight at 29-21, but Nelson’s baseline drive bumped the lead back to 10 at the quarter break.
Patrick Henry still led 36-25 after a pair of Mitch Bonner free throws with 5:54 left before the Vikings made a comeback.
Lumbrezer’s triple, 3 of 4 from the line by fellow freshman Bryce Hudik, Lumbrezer’s drive, then a triple each by Hudik and Lumbrezer around a Nelson basket and 3 of 4 PH free throws, pulled Evergreen within 41-39 with 1:08 left.
Teagan Pinkelman’s steal with 44 seconds left gave the Vikings an opportunity to tie or go ahead but Lumbrezer’s triple try was short and Joe Nickels along with Alex VanDeBussche each nailed 2 of 2 from the foul line to seal the Patriot victory.
Nelson and Lumbrezer each had 13 to lead their respective teams in scoring as the Patriots picked up their first victory on the season while the Vikings fell to 2-2.
Joe Blystone can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org