BELLBROOK — As a Bellbrook High School official so aptly put it, “All good things must come to an end.”
In a Southwestern Buckeye League, Southwestern division battle that featured seven ties and five lead changes, visiting Valley View outscored the host Bellbrook Golden Eagles 12-2 in the game’s final 3:23 to claim a 47-42 win.
According to the SWBL’s website, the win snapped Bellbrook’s 18-game win streak against league competition. The last time Bellbrook had lost to a league opponent at home came on Dec. 6, 2014 in a 52-29 loss to … Valley View.
The loss also snapped an 11-game winning streak against all competition on the Golden Eagles’ home floor.
“Oh shoot! This win is big!” Valley View coach Steve Dickson said. “It’s big for our program. Big for our school. Big for Hunter Stidham, our senior. It’s a big win for all of us. They all worked so hard, and this is a very tough place to play.”
Valley View’s 2017 season SWBL Southwestern Player of the Year, senior forward Hunter Stidham, finished with a game-high 23 points.
Bellbrook had a 40-35 lead with 3:34 left to play, after a pair of free throws were made by senior guard Bekah Vine.
But Stidham pulled the Spartans closer with two free throws of her own with 3:04 left to play, then the coach’s daughter, freshman guard Abigail Dickson, hit the back end of a 1-and-1 free throw situation on two straight occasions to get Valley View to within two points, 42-40, with 2:33 left to play.
Stidham then gave Valley View the lead for good when she hit a 3-pointer from the left corner to put the Spartans out in front, 43-42. Abigail Dickson then salted things away going 4-for-4 from the free-throw line in the game’s final 20 seconds for the final margin. Dickson was the other Spartans player in double-figure scoring with 11 points, all from the foul line.
“It was tight the whole game,” Bellbrook coach Jason Tincher said. “I think every time I looked up, the game was tied. Nobody broke away too far. That was a great battle between two very hard-playing teams.
“I think when you’re in a close game like that, it just comes down to making those key plays late in the game. It comes down to little things. We all have to take ownership in realizing that we didn’t score when we needed to late in the game, and you’ve gotta give them credit because they did. They stepped up.”
Junior guard Maren Freudenschuss led all Bellbrook scorers with her 11-point effort, which all came in the first half. Senior guard Cassidy Hofacker, the team’s leading scorer last season with a 13.1 points per game average, scored eight points, and sophomore guard Kayla Paul was next with seven.
With its season opening win at Miamisburg, a come-from-behind 47-46 win at Franklin and now the road win at Bellbrook, the 3-0 Spartans (2-0 in the SWBL’s Southwestern division) finally played a home game on Monday when they hosted Stivers.
Bellbrook (1-1, 1-1 Southwestern) hopes to start a new home court winning streak Tuesday, Dec. 5 when they’ll host Brookville for a 7:30 p.m. game.
Contact John Bombatch at 937-372-4444, Ext. 2123.