Pacers utilize depth, big second half to dispatch Trinity Lutheran by a 76-45 count

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Trinity Lutheran High School rolled into the Switzerland County gym on Friday night outmanned and undersized.

After 32 minutes of basketball, the Cougars headed back to Seymour after suffering a 76-45 loss highlighted by a high scoring second half by the Pacers.

In what was a clear “David versus Goliath” matchup, Switzerland County came out a little unfocused at the beginning of the game, and after Mark Sharp opened the game with a basket, Trinity Lutheran got a three-pointer from Cameron Hensley and a basket by Chad VanLiew to grab a quick lead.

Switzerland County responded with a basket by Kyle Green and a three-pointer by Travis Tackett; and that was followed by another bucket by Kyle Green and a freethrow from Clay Meyer that made the score 10-5 with 3:10 to play.

Trinity Lutheran didn’t back down, getting a three-pointer from Brandt Frische to slice the gap to two; but Switzerland County got baskets from Brennan Bragg and Kameron Pavy to finish off the opening quarter with a 14-8 advantage.

Coming out of the break, the Pacers opened the second stanza with a three-pointer by Noah Hughes and a bucket by Travis Tackett to push the lead to double figures, but Trinity Lutheran responded with a bucket to keep things interesting.

Switzerland County then went on a roll, getting a basket and a three-pointer from Travis Tackett and an inside bucket from Brennan Bragg that pushed the lead to 26-10 with just over two minutes to play in the half and forced Cougar coach Jon Sprengel to call a timeout.

The Cougars came out of the break and got a basket from Cameron Hensley; and Kyle Green then made a freethrow – but that would be the last point that Switzerland County would score in the half, as Trinity Lutheran scored the final seven points of the opening half to climb to within eight, 27-19, at the break.

Few are sure what Pacer coach Brian Bowen said to his team in the halftime lockerroom, but if the expression on his face as he left the gym was any indication – it wasn’t pretty.

Whatever was said, it certainly had an impact on the Pacers, as Switzerland County ran away with the game by outscoring Trinity Lutheran by a 49-26 count over the second half.

The third quarter got started with Kyle Green making a three-pointer and Brennan Bragg scoring inside. After Trinity Lutheran scored twice, the Pacers got a basket by Clay Meyer and a traditional three-point play by Travis Tackett.

That led to a bevy of treys:

– 4:02 to play: Trinity Lutheran’s Chad VanLiew hits a three.

– 3:36 to play: Kyle Green connects from downtown for three.

– 3:11 to play: Chad VanLiew hits another three.

Mark Sharp then broke the streak with a runner in the lane; but Trinity Lutheran’s Bradley Tabeling hit the Cougars’ third three-pointer in a row to cut the gap to 10.

Kyle Green then made a freethrow; and Noah Hughes followed that with a pair of charities. Mark Sharp then scored again; followed by three straight baskets by Brennan Bragg.

That run of 11 straight points closed the third quarter, and with a period to play, the Pacers held a commanding 53-32 lead.

Things stayed the same in the final quarter, as Switzerland County poured in 23 more points in spite of liberal substitutions by the Pacer coaching staff.

By the end of the game, everyone on the Switzerland County squad had scored with the exception of injured senior Justin Reagan; and the Pacers had claimed a 76-45 win.

Brennan Bragg led the balanced attack with 16 points; while Kyle Green and Travis Tackett finished with 14 each.

Noah Hughes had nine points; Mark Sharp had six; Alec McAlpine had five; and Josh Hon and Clay Meyer finished with three each. Kameron Pavy, Tray Meyer, and Tanner Ross each had two points.

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The junior varsity team had a 48-23 win over Trinity Lutheran.

Keegan Kincaid led the way with 14 points; while Kendall Otter finished with eight and Josh Hon had five.

Tanner Ross, Adam Clark, Tray Meyer, and Zach O’Neal all had four points apiece; while Blake Whitham had three and Damon Robbins contributed two.