Boys basketball: Cedarville pulls away from Catholic Central

Cutline: Cedarville High School senior Trent Koning is guarded by Catholic Central junior Ian Galluch during their game on Tuesday night in Cedarville. Koning had 19 points as the Indians won 44-37. Michael Cooper/CONTRIBUTED
Cutline: Cedarville High School senior Trent Koning is guarded by Catholic Central junior Ian Galluch during their game on Tuesday night in Cedarville. Koning had 19 points as the Indians won 44-37. Michael Cooper/CONTRIBUTED

CEDARVILLE — The Cedarville High School boys basketball team finally found its rhythm in the fourth quarter on Tuesday night against Catholic Central.

The Indians outscored the Irish 16-6 in the final eight minutes en route to a 44-37 victory in a key Ohio Heritage Conference South Division game in Cedarville.

Cedarville senior Trent Koning scored 11 of this game-high 19 points in the fourth quarter, including going 5-for-5 from the free throw line. Indians senior Hunter Baldwin also scored 13 points as Cedarville (10-1, 7-1) won its fourth straight game.

“I told the guys I didn’t think it was a pretty win by any means, but we just grinded it out,” said Indians coach Ryan Godlove.

The Indians found out early in the early afternoon they would be without second-leading scorer Isaiah Ramey due to COVID-19 protocols, meaning several players took on different roles on the court.

“He’s obviously a huge player for us,” Godlove said. “To be able to come in here and play against a good Catholic Central team who is playing really good basketball and find a way to get the job done, I’m just really excited for the guys. I think it shows our depth this year. We had guys step up and play big minutes and big roles for us tonight.”

Catholic Central junior Ashton Young scored 11 points and junior Ian Galluch and sophomore Tyler Galluch each added 10 for the Irish (10-3, 8-3), which saw its seven-game winning streak snapped.

“They just outplayed us, outhustled us in the fourth,” said Irish coach John Detling. “It was a tough loss. They were definitely ready for us. They weren’t backing done even with Ramey being out. Hats off to them.”

The Irish led 25-23 at the half and took a 31-28 lead into the fourth quarter.

The final eight minutes belonged to the Indians. A putback by Baldwin, back-to-back buckets by Koning, a steal and layup by senior Caleb McKinion and a layup by Koning gave the Indians a 39-31 lead, forcing an Irish timeout with 2:04 remaining.

“When we were playing from behind, there was more pressure,” Godlove said. “Once we got the lead, we just seemed to play with less pressure and seemed to attack a little bit more. I thought that helped. They also had to come out and guard us a bit more, which opened up some driving lanes.”

The Irish pulled to within four points twice in the final two minutes, but wouldn’t get any closer. The Indians went 6-for-7 from the free throw line in the fourth quarter to seal the win.

Catholic Central committed 10 turnovers and allowed 10 offensive rebounds in the game, which led to a total of 16 Cedarville points.

“Every time we would get a stop, we’d turn it back over,” Detling said.

The Irish face another tough OHC game on Friday night against West Liberty-Salem. They’ll play Lehman Catholic on Saturday before hosting South Division co-leader Greeneview on Tuesday at Jason Collier Gymnasium.

“It’s not going to get any easier,” Detling said. “Hopefully the positive we can take from this is that we may be in this position again and we may remember (what it’s like). … We’ll watch film, learn from our mistakes and get ready for West Liberty on Friday.”

The Indians have a two-game home stretch this weekend — Fairbanks on Friday night and Metro Buckeye Conference leader Legacy Christian on Saturday night.

“I’m just pleased that we’re playing really good basketball,” Godlove said. “We’re playing together. To see the guys step up when some adversity hits, I thought that was awesome. We weren’t hitting shots early, but we found a way to get the job done.”

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