Coming into the consolation game of the Rivertown Classic Basketball Tournament Friday evening, Pacer coach David Todd had seen his team average just 36 points per game on the South Dearborn floor.
The good news is that the Pacers topped their average in the consolation game; but the bad news was that the Pacers’ 40 points weren’t enough to keep Lawrenceburg from claiming third place with a 55-40 win.
The Pacers got off to a good start, when after Lawrenceburg’s Travis Thayer opened the contest with a three-pointer, Switzerland County got four straight points from junior center Mat Deaton. The second basket was a follow up off of a missed shot, and although it was still early, Switzerland County held a lead.
After Andrew Stoneking scored inside to put the Tigers in front; two freethrows by B.J. Shelton pushed Switzerland County back in front 6-5 with 3:31 to play.
Those would be the final points that the Pacers would score in the opening quarter, as Lawrenceburg scored nine straight points to close the period holding a 14-6 advantage.
B.J. Shelton opened the second quarter with a basket; but the Tigers got a bucket from Andrew Stoneking and a traditional three point play by Antonio Long to make the score 19-8. B.J. Shelton scored again to cut the lead back to single digits; but then began what would prove to be Switzerland County’s downfall when he missed two freethrows.
Danny Marqua made a freethrow for Lawrenceburg to make the lead 10; but a basket by Ben Hickman answered that. Antonio Long then drilled a three-pointer and Matt Richardson made two freethrows, and with 3:33 to play, the Tigers held a 25-12 lead.
Then it was Lawrenceburg’s turn to go cold offensively, as the Tigers wouldn’t score for the remainder of the half. Switzerland County only managed to make small inroads, however, as the Pacers got two buckets from B.J. Shelton to close to within nine at 25-16 at the half.
Andrew Stoneking opened the second half with a freethrow, but Switzerland County showed some signs of life when Chancey May drilled a three-pointer to cut the lead to seven. Antonio Long answered that with a strong inside move for a basket, and Travis Thayer capped that with a three-pointer.
It would be more than four minutes before Switzerland County would score again, when Josh Snow made a freethrow at the 2:04 mark and the Pacers trailing 36-20. Switzerland County missed six of eight freethrows in the third period — a statistic that would eventually balloon to just 8-for-22 from the freethrow line for the game — a big reason for the loss.
By the end of the third quarter, Lawrenceburg had moved out to a 39-21 lead.
The Tigers put the game away early in the final period, getting a basket from Travis Thayer and a three-pointer from Kurt Noel to extend the lead to 23 points. Chancey May hit a jumper to stop the Lawrenceburg run; but Travis Thayer matched that — and much of the final period was left to simply running out the clock and getting everyone in the game.
Switzerland County got points in the last quarter from Mat Deaton, Travis Webster, B.J. Shelton, Ben Hickman, Josh Snow, Ryan Owings, and Josh Reagan — but were only 4-for-10 from the freethrow line in the fourth quarter, spoiling any comeback thoughts.
At the final buzzer, Lawrenceburg held a 55-40 advantage.
B.J. Shelton led Switzerland County with 11 points in the game; while Mat Deaton finished with eight and both Chancey May and Ben Hickman had five each. Josh Snow finished with four points; Travis Webster added three points; and Ryan Owings and Josh Reagan had two each.
Travis Thayer led Lawrenceburg with 18 points; while Antonio Long was also in double figures with 13.
The Pacers return to action tomorrow (Friday) night when they travel to Charlestown. The varsity will then play at Southwestern on Saturday night. The junior varsity team will play at Southwestern tonight (Thursday) at 7 p.m. The scheduling switch was made necessary due to a wrestling meet at Southwestern on Saturday.