FAIRBORN — Visiting Miamisburg slowed down speedy Fairborn, and the change in pace disrupted the host Skyhawks enough to give them troubles, in a 58-45 Vikings win Feb. 12 at the Baker Memorial Fieldhouse.
On Senior Night, Shaunn Monroe turned in a game-high 27-point effort to get over his scoring average, and fellow seniors O.J. Person and Tylen Eatmon scored eight points each to go percentage points over their averages as well, but seven other Fairborn players were held scoreless.
Skyhawks coach Billy Harchick said the difference came down to height and numbers.
“They definitely slowed the game down and played their style,” he said. “They did a great job of getting us out of our up-n-down game, but also their height. We have our other big player (Jarod Bodekor) out with an injury. It’s hard to contain all of their Bigs with just one Big (6-foot-4 O.J. Person).”
Harchick doubted whether Bodekor would be ready to play in Friday’s 7:30 p.m. Feb. 15 regular season finale at Xenia, but hoped to have the talented 6-5 senior forward back in time for the sectional postseason tournament. Eighth-seeded Fairborn (13-8, and second in the Greater Western Ohio Conference’s American South at 10-4) will take on No. 11 Springboro in the opening round of the Division I sectional tourney at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 23 at Vandalia’s Butler High School.
Miamisburg (15-6, 5-5 and tied for the GWOC National West with Lebanon) had at least two “bigs” — 6-6 senior center Duncan Hall and 6-3 senor forward Drew Barry. Add in the Vikings’ leading scorer, 6-1 senior guard Brett Hensley, and Fairborn’s size disadvantage soon became apparent.
Hensley, who leads the Vikes with a 12.2 points-per-game average, led Miamisburg with 16 points, Hall finished with 12 points and at least 13 rebounds, Corey Hartman also had 12 points, Barry wound up with 10 points and Alex Ball scored eight.
Fairborn tried to mount yet another comeback this season. The Skyhawks have trailed at halftime in six of their wins this season. Down 28-19 at the break this time, Fairborn’s Monroe and Eatmon teamed up to lead the Skyhawks on a quick 6-0 run to start the second half, and draw within three points of the lead at 25-28. But a Barry 3-pointer with just over 40 seconds left in the third quarter gave the Vikings a double-digit lead, 41-30.
Up 41-32 with one quarter yet to play, Miamisburg outscored Fairborn by a 17-13 margin in the fourth quarter to pull away.
“Fairborn is one of the better teams in the American Conference. To beat them at home, knowing how good Shaunn is, it’s an outstanding win for us,” ‘Burg coach Tim Fries said. “Defensively, we were able to take away some of their other pieces. That makes it hard for one guy to do it all. I think we did a good job with that.”
Harchick credited sophomore Cole Spencer and senior O.J. Person with a strong determined effort against Miamisburg’s ‘Bigs,’ and made sure to thank the Skyhawks’ other seniors — Monroe, Eatmon, Joe Nickel, Jared Bates and Bodekor — for the effort they’d put in all season long.
“They’ve done a great job for us all year,” he said.
Contact John Bombatch at 937-372-4444, Ext. 2123.