UNION CITY – It was the boys half of the Route 47 showdown between Ansonia and Mississinawa Valley and for 2-1/2 quarters it was a tight game … but the Tigers started to separate late in the 3rd going into the 4th pulling away for a 64-43 victory.
Ansonia held a 12-6 lead at the end of the 1st quarter only to see the Hawks battle back in the 2nd period and trail 23-18 at the half.
In the opening frame sr. guard Matt Barga scored 5 points, sr. forward Ethan Reichert had 4 and sr. Trevor Hemmerich connected from beyond the arch for a team total of 12 points.
The Hawks struggled to score but found success in the 2nd quarter with sr. Bryson Gower and freshman guard Cing Scott each scoring 6 points to help keep Mississinawa close at the break.
With Ansonia leading 14-6 the Hawks got back-to-back buckets from Scott to close to 14-10.
The Tigers pushed the lead back out to 19-12 before getting two fielders form Bryson Gower and then another score form Scott to close the gap to 19-18 with 25 seconds left to go in the half and the Nest was rocking to see the Blackhawks pull to within a point.
But Ansonia would respond with two of their own scores to lead at the break 23-18.
“I wasn’t happy with the first half because we had an opportunity, I feel to put some distance between us and we let them make a run at us at the end of the half And I was like, you know, now they’re over there feeling pretty good about themselves,” Ansonia boys basketball coach Tony Overton said.
“I told them if we come out in the 2nd half like we did in the second quarter, we’re going to go home with a with a loss,” Overton added.
But the Blackhawks were still riding high on emotion, and they would get a big 3rd quarter from senior forward Aron Hunt who scored 8 of his 9 points in the game in the quarter. His and one combo pulled the MV to withing a bucket 27-25.
But the Tigers would finally roar back as they went on a 10-point run on their way to a 24-point 3rd quarter to open up a commanding 47-33 lead heading into the final stanza.
It was Matt Barga leading the way again in the 3rd quarter with 7 points and Hemmerich 6 for the Tigers.
If Mississinawa had any hopes of coming back it soon would be shattered as Ansonia began to throw it in from distance connecting on 5 triples in the final frame. With 3 of them coming from freshman Bennett Lehman as the Tigers added 17 more points to claim a 64-43 Route 47 victory.
“I thought we showed patience in the 2nd half they made a run but then we made a couple of stops and they we brought it to them. In the 4th quarter we brought in a freshman who hit a couple threes and it woke up some of the older guys and then the basket just got bigger, and we were able to put some distance between us,” Overton praised.
“You know, when you play this game you can throw the records out the window, both teams really want to win, and they’ll do whatever it takes, basically at that point it becomes who wants it more as this game always has it’s peaks and valleys and fortunately we were able to hold on,” Overton added.
“I’m glad to get his win and I love our future and our young guys on this team. The season isn’t over and but I’m trying to get the older guys to say hey, there’s still a season right? You know what I mean? We might only be 3-9, I don’t care about that. I care about doing stuff the right way and getting better and over the course of the game tonight we got better. So those are my expectations for the rest of the season continue to get better and have a chance to make some noise in the post season tournament,” Overton concluded.
The Tigers were led by Matt Barga with 17 points, Ethan Reichert and Trevor Hemmerich each had 15 points, Bennet Lehman 12 to give the Tigers 5 players in double figures. Layne Bowman had 5 points.
Ansonia is now 4-9 on the year and 2-5 in the WOAC. They will at Minster Tuesday night.
Mississinawa Valley was led by Cing Scott with 14 points, Bryson Gower had 12, Aron Hunt 9, Kyle Wehrkamp 5 and Tanner Leichty 2. The Blackhawks are 1-13 for the year and 0-6 in the WOAC. They will play at Bradford Friday night.