By John Bombatch Sports Editor email@example.com
January 25, 2014
FAIRBORN — The idea was for the pajama-clad student section to erupt in loud boisterous cheer once the Fairborn Skyhawks scored their 10th point against visiting Miamisburg. And so the 100-plus group of students waited in silence for that point to come.
And waited. That 10th point never came in the first quarter.
Instead, Miamisburg enjoyed the quiet surroundings, enough to amass a 19-3 lead after one quarter of play.
That deficit was just too much for the Skyhawks to overcome. Miamisburg regained first place in the Greater Western Ohio Conference’s South Division with a 60-53 win, Friday night at the Fairborn Memorial Fieldhouse.
“Our defense made some great stops early on , and that led to some great plays on our part,” Miamisburg coach Tim Fries said. “This doesn’t clinch the division for us, but it’s a big win. We’re the only team in the division with just one loss now, so we’re in control of our own destiny.”
Fries credited 6-foot-6 senior center Connor Brown and senior 6-4 forward Justin Williams with establishing control inside for the Vikings (9-5, 5-1 GWOC South). Brown, who finished with 16 points, made every Fairborn scoring attempt from inside difficult. Williams finished with a game-high 19 points, including 10 in the final quarter.
Fairborn coach Nathan Chivington said his team feeds off the crowd noise. And it showed when the student section jumped around in their jammies and screamed their support from the second quarter on.
Soon the Skyhawks were chipping away at the first-quarter deficit. Fairborn (7-7, 5-2 GWOC South) outscored Miamisburg 16-14 in the second quarter to pull within 33-19 at the break. They then doubled their first-half scoring total with 19 points (to the Vikings’ 11) to pull within six points (38-44) with one quarter left to play.
A long-range 3-pointer by Fairborn junior guard Caleb Chastain pulled the Skyhawks to within 44-41, with 6:48 still left in the final quarter, but Vikings Williams, Brown and senior guard Jeremy Randolph combined to outscore Fairborn 16-12 the rest of the way.
“Miamisburg came ready to play from the very start, and we just didn’t,” Chivington said. “We do feed off of the student section. They create a great atmosphere for us to play in. … I just wish we had more home games than we already have, to play here.”
Jordan Michael finished with 16 points, including a pair of three pointers that brought the fans to a roar early on in the second half, to lead Fairborn. Jordan Pumroy and Malik Jacobs finished with nine points each and Branden Lilley, who also had a pair of huge third-quarter treys to help the Skyhawks battle back, finished with eight. Chivington said the division title is still a possibility, but now they’ll need some help.
“We just have to control what we can control, and win our games,” he said. “Springboro beat Miamisburg once before this season, and they’ll play them again, so maybe they can do it again. We will need some help, but that Springboro-Miamisburg game could be pretty big.”
Fairborn has a busy week next week. They have a make-up game at home against Greenville slated for Tuesday. They have another make-up game on the following Thursday on the road against Dayton Belmont, then they return to South Division action Friday at Lebanon.