BEAVERCREEK — The Beavercreek Beavers high school boys basketball team fell to 5-12 as they suffered their second loss to Wayne this season. The visiting Warriors advanced to 9-9 as they completed the season sweep with a win by a score of 62-53.
“It’s never easy against these guys,” Wayne coach Nathan Martindale said. “We play each other twice a year, the coaches know each other, the players know each other and it’s always a physical battle.”
The Warriors took a commanding lead of 17 points early in the game as they out muscled the Beavers in rebounding. They also played well defensively holding the Beavers to five points in the second quarter. However, just as the game looked like it would be a blowout, the Beavers came storming back.
“We talked about how we had to stay focused and be tougher,” Beavercreek team captain James Hymes said. “We came out with more intensity in the second half.”
The Beavers took momentum following halftime and clawed their way back to within six. With the Warriors up 54-48, Martindale took a timeout to try to refocus his team.
“I told them that we got to get a stop,” Martindale said. “I told them to slow it down, breathe, and focus on getting one stop at a time.”
The Warriors were able to hold their lead and ultimately won by nine down the stretch. The Beavers were disappointed, but it was encouraging for them to fight back.
“We never doubted that we could come back…but it is what it is,” Hymes said. “We struggled to cover Ronnie [Hampton] tonight.”
Hampton led the Warriors with 25 points while Chris Herbort led the Beavers with 19.
Beavercreek coach Mark Hess had said earlier in the year that their team was young and needed to grow and develop. Hymes said that he has seen this team change and develop throughout the season.
“During summer and early season it was all about ourselves,” Hymes said. “It has been good to see guys start to play as a team for each other this year, and not just play for themselves.”
For the Warriors, their attention turns to the remainder of the season.
“We are hoping to continue our momentum and play our best basketball come March,” Martindale said. “We put ourselves in a position to contend for the league title if we get a little help.”
Beavercreek’s next game is at 7:30 p.m Tuesday, Feb. 5 at Western Hills in Cincinnati.
Wayne’s next game is against Dunbar at 7:30 p.m., on Monday Feb 4. at home.
Joshua Woolverton is a student intern for Greene County News from Cedarville University.