Swanton could not slow down a pair of Liberty Center runs at the start of each half, and fhad to play catch up for most of the game in what culminated to a 48-41 Tiger win Friday at Swanton in Northwest Ohio Athletic League boys basketball action.
In the opening quarter, the Tigers got off to a 10-0 advantage in the first 4:35. All five hoops during that stretch were made by different players.
Evan Conrad scored first 18 seconds in, Matthew Orr added a made jump shot, Trey Patterson converted a one-hander, Dakota Shultz scored off a steal and Cam Krugh scored on a drive to the hoop.
Swanton’s Andrew Thornton scored the game’s next four points, getting the Bulldogs on the board. Krugh responded at the other end for LC, but a Trent Weigel three-point play got Swanton within 12-7 after the first.
The Dogs then orchestrated a 7-2 run at the beginning of the second quarter to tie it.
First Cole Mitchey split a pair from the foul line, then Thornton’s floater got them within two at the 5:40 mark. The Tigers countered with a hoop, however, Mitchey found Blake Szalapski inside for a hoop and two Thornton free throws knotted the score at 14 with 3:07 before halftime.
LC regained the advantage on Patterson’s 3-pointer with 2:17 left — a lead they would never again relinquish.
Shultz followed with a bucket off a steal, Josh Vance responded with a putback for the Dogs, and Conrad’s fastbreak hoop put the halftime difference at 21-16.
The Tigers only enhanced their lead in the third quarter, going on a 9-0 run to begin the stanza.
Conrad scored in the paint 20 seconds in and Patterson tacked on a three just over a minute later. Shultz then turned a Tiger steal into points, followed by a basket inside for Conrad that made it a 30-16 edge at the 3:42 mark.
Swanton made a little headway in the closing minutes of the period but LC maintained a 10-point edge, 35-25, after three quarters via a Isaiah Estelle bucket.
The closest the Dogs could get in the fourth was six points. Thornton’s basket inside and a Vance score off a Thornton pass reduced the deficit to 35-29 just 1:06 in. However the Tigers, in particular Estelle, shot back with a pair of hoops putting them back up 10.
The Dogs got back in the win column Saturday, traveling to Stryker and earning a 50-43 win in overtime. They are now 9-7 overall and 2-2 in the NWOAL.
Swanton hosts Springfield Wednesday and Delta on Friday.
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010.