Pacers get balanced play, key freethrow shooting in ORVC victory over Southwestern

314

The Switzerland County Pacer varsity basketball team got back to its winning ways on Saturday night with a 53-51 victory over Southwestern.

The game was a nip-and-tuck battle all night long, with neither team being able to hold a lead. Mark Sharp’s runner in the lane with six seconds to play capped the victory for the Pacers. That shot was followed by a wild ending for the Rebels, who called a timeout but couldn’t get the ball inbounds, so they were forced to call a second timeout.

With the ball in play, Rebel Kyle Kempker raced upcourt while Pacer fans screamed for a double dribble call – and then Rebel fans had their chance to scream as Kyle Kempker ended up in a pile of players around the freethrow line – and again there was no call.

Switzerland County jumped out early on a basket by Mark Sharp and a three-pointer from Kyle Green, and after Tanner Mahoney scored for the Rebels, the Pacer reeled off five more points – again on a basket by Mark Sharp and a three-pointer by Kyle Green – to grab a 10-2 lead.

After Zack Scrogham scored for the Rebels, the Pacers got a freethrow from Brennan Bragg and a bucket by Kyle Green to move out to a 13-4 lead.

Although the missed freethrow by Brennan Bragg was a disappointment to the sophomore center, it was also significant, as it would be the only missed freethrow that the Pacers would have on the night.

Southwestern responded, going on a run of seven straight points – five by Tanner Mahoney – to close to within two points with 15-seconds to play in the half.

Mark Sharp would then provide some foreshadowing of what was to come, as he hit a jumper with five seconds to play that put Switzerland County on top 15-11.

Zack Scrogham opened the second quarter for the Rebels by hitting a three-pointer to slice the lead to one; but Daniel Welch responded with a baseline move and a bucket. After Southwestern matched that, the Pacers got a three-pointer from Brandon Otter and another basket by Daniel Welch to move out to a six-point lead.

Both teams then traded baskets, with Kyle Green accounting for the final four points of the half for the Pacers, and at the half Switzerland County held a 26-23 lead.

Southwestern opened the second half hot, getting baskets by Tanner Mahoney and Zack Scrogham to take the lead; but Clay Meyer got free for a basket to retake the lead for Switzerland County.

Zack Scrogham then made two straight three pointers for Southwestern, and with less than five minutes to play in the quarter, the Rebels found themselves with a five-point lead.

Two freethrows by Mark Sharp were matched by a pair from Tanner Mahoney; and then Switzerland County went on an offensive run of its own, getting eight straight points on baskets by Clay Meyer, Kyle Green, Mark Sharp, and two freethrows by Kyle Green to move back in front by three.

The two teams then traded baskets for the rest of the quarter, with Clay Meyer and Kyle Green scoring for the Pacers, and Switzerland County found itself still holding a three-point lead, 42-39, with a period to play.

Brennan Bragg got things rolling for Switzerland County as the final quarter started, getting an inside basket and then converting a traditional three-point play on the next trip down the floor to push the lead to eight.

Southwestern countered with a run 10 straight points, led by Tanner Mahoney and Kyle Kempker, and with 2:32 remaining, the Rebels held a 49-47 lead.

Mark Sharp then knotted the game with a pair of freethrows, but Tanner Mahoney again got free inside to give Southwestern another two point lead. Again, Mark Sharp went back to the freethrow line and converted both, and with 35-seconds to play the teams were tied at 51-51.

Southwestern went on offense, but with 17-seconds to play Kyle Green got close enough to draw a five-second call against the Rebels – giving possession back to Switzerland County.

That set up Mark Sharp’s drive through the paint, and the Pacers escaped with a 53-51 victory.

Kyle Green led the Pacers with 18 points; and Mark Sharp was also in double figures with 16. Brennan Bragg and Clay Meyer had six points each; Daniel Welch finished with four; and Brandon Otter had three.

Tanner Mahoney led all scorers with 22 points for Southwestern, and Zack Scrogham finished with 15.

*

Southwestern defeated Switzerland County 43-24 in the junior varsity game.

The Pacers were led by Noah Hughes, who finished with six points; while Justin Reagan and Alec McAlpine each had five. Tray Meyer, Kendall Otter, Travis Tackett, and Kameron Pavy finished with two points each.