XENIA — Visiting Bellbrook hung with Xenia for most of the first quarter, but when the rims stopped shaking after Tuesday’s Jan. 31 boys high school basketball contest, the host Buccaneers just had too many offensive weapons.
Samari Curtis scored a game-high 25 points, Ricky Williams dumped in 13 and Xenia teammates Teandre’ Adams and Onoriode Uloho scored eight each in a convincing 73-47 win over Bellbrook in the Xenia High School gym.
“They shot it well tonight,” Bellbrook coach Donnie Tate said. “They made quite a few of their threes. We tried to take away the inside to force them to make some of those perimeter shots, and they just knocked ‘em down. We tried to recognize who the hot shooters were, and tried to play off them. But tonight they just had guys who were hitting their threes anyhow.”
Xenia (11-5) hit eight 3-pointers in the game. Curtis swished half of those, Adams hit two of them, while Williams and Ronnie Molitor each hit one.
The Buccaneers led 20-13 after the first quarter of play, but then Xenia went on a 12-3 scoring run to double up the Golden Eagles, 32-16, with 4:55 yet to play in the half. Xenia held that margin for the rest of the first half to take control of the contest, 43-22 at the break.
“Everybody is stepping up and starting to knock down their shots. I’m still unhappy with our free-throw shooting (Xenia converted nine of 14 tries), but that’s another issue,” Xenia coach Kent Anderson said. “We’re moving the ball and sharing the ball well. When Teandre’ (Adams) can knock down threes, and Ricky (Williams) and Kobe (Hughlett) can get to the rim, that’s a good thing. I thought the posts looked out for each other well — Meechi (Harris) made some nice high-low passes tonight to “Norde” (Uloho) that were very very unselfish.
“We’re just not committed on the boards enough, though. We need to do a little better job on the defensive glass,” he said. “Part of that is we’re looking to leak out and get down the floor on our fast break. If we commit there, then we can fastbreak. … We didn’t do everything we needed to do defensively, but it’s definitely gotten better.”
Xenia has now won six straight (the team’s longest streak of the season thus far), and nine of their last 11. Anderson says Friday’s Feb. 3 road matchup at Kettering Fairmont could help his team’s seeding in the post season tournament.
“Friday’s a big one for us, tournament-wise,” Anderson said. “It’ll knock us up or down a spot in the seeding. Fairmont will be a big game for us, and then we’ll come back and see what we have left in the tank on Saturday (Feb. 4) when we host Tecumseh.”
Tuesday’s loss was just the third time this season that Tate’s Bellbrook club (5-10) had given up more than 70 points in a game. The other two came at the hands of Southwestern Buckeye League Southwestern division leader Franklin.
Subbing for Nathan Cordonnier, whom Tate said was unavailable for Tuesday’s game, Skyler Golden led Bellbrook with 12 points scored while Sean Ulrich and Hayden Greene each finished with 11. The Golden Eagles host Monroe at 7:15 p.m. Friday, Feb. 3 for their next game.