CONTINENTAL — The Ottoville Big Green traveled to the home of the Continental Pirates for their last road Putnam County League boys basketball contest of the year.
The Pirates came away with a very low-scoring win over the Big Green, 38-28.
The Pirates came into the game with a considerable size advantage over the Big Green with two 6-5 players (Clay Bracken and Chaz Slattman) and two 6-3 players (Brandon Burke and Bret Slattman) in their starting lineup. The Big Green, with only one player taller than 6-2 in the lineup (senior Kevin Schnipke at 6-6), knew they were in for a battle inside and on the boards.
To complicate matters for the Green, two minutes into the game, they lost Schnipke for nearly the entire quarter as he was forced to leave play with a bloody nose. That opened the door even wider for the Pirates underneath and allowed them to race out to a 10-4 lead after one quarter. Schnipke’s replacement, 6-2 sophomore Cory Honigford, did a nice job coming in and scoring all of the Big Green’s four points for the quarter.
The Big Green went on a 8-0 run to start the second quarter and grabbed the lead from the Pirates at 12-10 with 5:00 to play in the quarter. The Pirates struggled the entire quarter with their shooting from the field but were aided by the Big Green also having their own problems from the field. As both teams headed to their locker rooms, the score was tied 16-16.
Coach Todd Turnwald continued to see bright spots in his Ottoville team’s defensive effort but the worries continued on the offensive end: “Defensively, we’re doing a lot of good things. We just struggle to score at times and for long periods of play. There are things we want to run but when we do, we throw the ball out of bounds or turn it over. We try and let them play a little bit but that seems to not be working either right now. It’s frustrating.”
The stats told the story way too easily to Coach Turnwald: “At halftime, they had 24 shot attempts, mainly in the paint. They had 15 offensive rebounds, compared to our two. They were basically playing volleyball against us.”
The third quarter started out very promising for the Big Green with Schnipke scoring two quick baskets to give his team a 20-16 lead early. Another basket by junior Ryan Honigford extended the lead to 22-16 at the 2:58 mark but that’s when 6-0 senior Spencer Ordway of the Pirates decided to take the game into his own hands. He scored the last 7 points of the quarter and brought his team all the way back to give them a 23-22 lead after three.
Pirates head coach Mark Wilson was quick to acknowledge his senior’s effort: “Spencer started for us at the beginning of the year; however, I was trying to get a spark off the bench so I started having him fill that role for us. Spencer deserves to start but he gives me more off the bench than when he starts a game. I need that spark when things go awry. He took care of the ball and made the foul shots I needed him to make (4-of-4). He did an awesome job for us tonight.”
The fourth-quarter shooting woes continued for the Big Green. Derek Schimmoeller started the quarter driving the lane, being fouled and completing the 3-point play to give the Green the lead 25-23. However, it would be the last time they would be out front; not until Bryan Hohlbein’s 3-pointer at the 1:23 mark was Ottoville able to dent the scoreboard again, closing the Pirates’ lead to 31-28. The Big Green was forced to foul the Pirates the remainder of the contest and was held scoreless, sending the Pirates to their second PCL win of the year.
For the Big Green (3-14, 0-6 PCL), they were led in scoring by Schnipke with seven points. The Big Green were 10-of-33 from the field (30%), 6-of-8 from the stripe (75%), hauled in 17 rebounds and committed 12 turnovers. The Big Green will be on the road Tuesday night as they travel to McComb.
For the victorious Pirates (5-11, 2-3 PCL), they were led by seniors Bret Slattman and Ordway with 14 and 11 points, respectively. From the field, the Pirates shot 29 percent (14-48) and 64 percent (9-14) from the foul line. They hauled in 32 rebounds and committed only eight turnovers. The Pirates will entertain Stryker tonight.
The JV game was won by the Pirates 38-37.
Brandon Burke 1-0-0-2, Bret Slattman 6-0-2-14, Clay Bracken 2-0-3-7, Chaz Slattman 2-0-0-4, Spencer Ordway 2-1-4-11. Totals 13-1-9/13-38.
Derek Schimmoeller 1-1-1-6, Ryan Honigford 1-0-2-4, Luke Schimmoeller 0-0-0-0, Cory Honigford 3-0-0-6, Bryan Hohlbein 0-1-0-3, Kevin Schnipke 2-0-3-7, Brandt Landin 1-0-0-2. Totals 8-2-6/8-28.
Score by Quarters:
Three-point goals: Continental, Ordway; Ottoville, D. Schimmoeller, Hohlbein.
Dallas Geckle 0-0-1-1, Matt Bracken 1-0-0-2, Zach Schwarzman 3-0-2-8, Justin Halliwill 1-4-1-15, Tim Vogt 0-0-1-1, Grant Bradford 4-1-0-11. Totals 9-5-5/12-38.
Wes Markward 0-1-2-5, Kyle Bendele 0-1-0-3, Brandt Landin 2-0-0-4, Cory Honigford 1-0-2-4, Austin Honigford 7-1-1-18, Cory Fischer 1-0-1-3. Totals 11-3-6/9-28.
Score by Quarters:
Three-point goals: Continental, Halliwill 4, Bradford; Ottoville, Markward, Bendele, A. Honigford.