Sabers use a big second half to earn 58-41 win as Vikings honor six; see other BBB scores
VINTON - Any time a team hosts senior night, the motivation increases for them to come away with a victory. As the Vinton-Shellsburg Vikings (7-9, 4-5 West) honored six players in Isaac Wiley, Keegan Thompson, Alex Pladsen, Chevy Burnell, Nolan Haisman, and Seth Patterson Thursday night, the goal remained the same. However, it was the visiting Central Dewitt Sabers (8-9, 3-7 East) that played spoiler in a WaMaC cross-divisional boys game.
Locked in a defensive first quarter, Tucker Kinney got the road team on the board early with a lay up, but then the junior’s jump shot off the glass at the 3:30 mark was the next basket for either side. Less than a minute later though, CJ Rickels converted on an “and one” to bring Vinton-Shellsburg within one at 4-3. Following a Central Dewitt point at the foul line, junior Sam Griffith forced a turnover and turned it into an easy lay up to create the game’s first tie. However, with the two teams combining for three free throws to end the opening quarter, it was the Sabers who scored a pair to lead 7-6.
Transitioning to the next eight minutes of play, Central Dewitt began with a Henry Bloom three pointer, but a Jose Wilson lay up and two Haisman free throws pulled this one into another tie at 10 all. A 6-2 Saber run allowed them to get some breathing room again. However, four straight points for Wiley had the scoreboard read 16-16. Unfortunately for the Vikings though, they could not take the lead in the quarter or at all during the game, despite being even with their opponent many times early. Finishing out the first half, Central Dewitt got two free throws and a lay up compared to one Haisman point as they held the 21-17 advantage midway through.
“At halftime, we were 0-7 from three and I thought all seven were good looks. They played pretty well defensively, but we also just struggled offensively,” said V-S Head Coach Joe Johnson.
Only down four coming out of the locker room, Vinton-Shellsburg was hoping to cut even further into their deficit, but the third quarter belonged to the Sabers. Starting with a Bloom three pointer, five more points followed after a Wiley lay up to go up by double digits. Haisman knocked down a three of his own to tighten the gap at 29-22. However, an 8-0 run helped Central Dewitt win the quarter by close to a dozen, 16-5.
Trailing by 15 entering the fourth, the Vikings’ deficit would increase to as much as 19 before Haisman tried his best to start a rally. With an “and one”, consecutive three pointers, and two free throws, Vinton-Shellsburg got it back to a dozen. Unfortunately, that’s the closest they got the rest of the way as the visitors scored nine of the final 13 points to win comfortably, 58-41.
“Some of those run outs we had, we lost the ball out of bounds when we should have had some break away lay ups. Just things like that where we aren’t converting those opportunities into points like we should. It stinks because I feel like defensively, we give ourselves a chance every night, but we can’t do those things,” added Coach Johnson.
Leading the way for the Vikings was the senior duo of Haisman (17, 6) and Wiley (7, 8), who combined for 24 points and 14 rebounds respectively in their final home game.
“This time of the year is always tough because you spend so much time with those guys and then it can abruptly come to an end. You build those relationships over time, but they were able to play one more game here and kind of have that senior night. They deserve that,” commented Coach Johnson.
Friday, Vinton-Shellsburg was able to snap a four game losing streak as they moved their completed regular season record to 8-10 overall and 5-5 within the West division with a 47-27 victory at Independence (story follows later). The Vikings began Class 3A Substate 3 postseason play last night as they traveled to Cedar Rapids Xavier to take on the Saints. Unfortunately, Vinton-Shellsburg fell by the score of 57-48, ending their season (story in Friday's edition of the Cedar Valley Times).
Other scores from Friday included wins for Benton and CPU, who knocked off Clear Creek-Amana (81-79) and South Tama (46-25) respectively. Finishing with an 11-1 record, the Stormin’ Pointers (13-7 overall) won the WaMaC West division outright with the Bobcats (12-8, 9-2) following in second. Those two local rivals played each other last night in Class 3A Substate 3 postseason play at West Delaware High School in Manchester and it was CPU that came out on top, 63-42 (recap to come in Friday's edition of the Cedar Valley Times).
Story by Mike Thomas:
Oelwein Daily Register
INDEPENDENCE – The Mustangs fell to Vinton-Shellsburg 47-27 Friday night in the final home game of the season.
The game remained close in the first quarter, but Vinton-Shellsburg took control of the game in the second quarter and entered halftime with a 25-16 lead.
After halftime, Vinton-Shellsburg continued their strong play as they scored twice as many points as Independence did in the second half.
Independence head basketball coach Chad Beatty said his players were not locked in Friday’s game.
“Our effort tonight was disappointing,” Beatty said. “We have guys who have executed at a high level, and we didn’t take care of the little things, which made the outcome the way it was.”
Senior Jaxon Miller led Independence with eight points and junior Kaleb Lamphier was second with seven points. The Mustangs only managed to score two points in the fourth quarter.
Vinton-Shellsburg had two players reach double-digit points and eight different players who scored for them. Senior Isaac Wiley led the way with 13 points and was followed by junior Sam Griffith’s 12-point effort.
Beatty said his team’s performance was a step down from their game last night.
“We didn’t attack their pressure,” Beatty said. “We should be able to and were on our heels and let them dictate all of our offensive possessions tonight. Any [ball that was] 50-50, they won, effort they won and the rebounding battle they won.”
Independence closes the regular season out with a 3-18 record and Vinton-Shellsburg improves to 8-10.