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Weary-legged Vikings notch tournament win over Eagles


Symmes Valley Vikings’ Caden Brammer (2) hits a jump shot over the outstretched arm of Eastern’s Isaac Richardson (15) during Wednesday’s Division 4 sectional tournament game. The Vikings won, 68-54. (Photo By Josh Wilson)

Jim Walker
jim.walker@irontontribune.com

WILLOW WOOD — After building a big halftime lead, the weary Symmes Valley Vikings thought this was a good chance to rest their tired legs.
But the Eastern Eagles decided to make it a game again and the Vikings had to get their legs back in gear as they fought off any comeback hopes and came away with a 68-54 win in the Division 4 sectional tournament on Wednesday.
Symmes Valley led by 22 points at halftime when Eastern chopped off 14 points from the lead in the third quarter.
The Vikings were unable to practice or play last week due to the weather and power outage at the school and then played back-to-back road games on Monday and Tuesday against the top two teams in the Southern Ohio Conference.
But the Vikings dug deep and summoned enough energy to get the win and will now play in the sectional finals at New Boston at 7 p.m. Saturday.
The Vikings and Tigers just played on Tuesday night in a makeup game with New Boston winning easily 86-57.
However, the Vikings also played at St. Joseph on Monday making them have to play road games on back-to-back nights.
Drew Scherer had a big offensive game as he led all scorers with 24 points including three 3-point goals.
Luke Leith had 15 points and 18 rebounds and Eli Patterson added 12 points, 9 rebounds and 3 blocked shots.
Caden Brammer added 9 points, 2 steals and 2 blocked shots and Grayson Walsh had 7 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals for the Vikings (8-10).
Dillon Mattox and Brennon Slusher scored 14 points each and Neil Leist added 11 points for Eastern (4-16).
Scherer and Brammer got the Vikings off to a fast start. Scherer hit two trifectas and scored 10 points while Brammer added a 3-pointer and had 7 points and it was 21-8.
The Vikings went inside in the second quarter as Leith and Patterson scored 6 points each and the defense limited Eastern to 5 points as the lead ballooned to 35-13 at the half.
Slusher made two 3-pointers and score 10 points while Mattox had 7 points and Eastern outscored the Vikings 29-15 in the third quarter to get within 50-42.
The Eagles began to foul the Vikings in the third quarter and continued into the fourth quarter in hopes of making a comeback should Symmes Valley fail to convert its free throws.
The Vikings were 6-of-11 from the line in the third quarter but made 10-of-14 in the fourth quarter to seal the win.
Scherer was 4-for-4 at the line in the fourth quarter and scored 8 points while Josh Ferguson and Walsh each went 2-for-2.
Eastern 8 5 29 12 = 54
Sym. Valley 21 14 15 18 = 68
BEAVER EASTERN (4-16): MIchael Cantrell 0 0 0-0 0, K.T. Reinsmith 0 0 0-0 0, Teagan Werner 0 1 0-0 3, Lonie Barnett 1 0 0-0 2, Dillon Mattox 6 0 2-4 14, Trenten Brown 0 0 0-0 0, Isaac Richardson 3 0 0-1 6, Errol Hesson 0 0 0-0 0, Neil Leist 1 2 3-4 11, Brennon Slusher 1 3 3-4 14, Jake Tribby 1 0 2-2 4. Totals: 13 6, 10-16 54. Fouls: 21. Fouled out: Richardson, Mattox.
SYMMES VALLEY (8-10): Caden Brammer 3 1 0-0 9, Luke Leith 7 0 1-6 15, Josh Ferguson 0 0 2-2 2, Drew Scherer 4 3 7-9 24, Nick Strow 0 0 0-0 0, Eli Patterson 5 0 2-8 12, Grayson Walsh 1 0 4-5 6. Totals: 24-52 16-30 68. 3-pt goals: 4-13. Rebounds: 16-O, 31-D = 47 (Leith 18, Patterson 9, Walsh 7). Assists: 14 (Walsh 5, Scherer 3). Steals: 8 (Walsh 2, Scherer 2, Brammer 2). Blocks: 5 (Patterson 3, Brammer 2). Turnovers: 25. Fouls: 15. Fouled out: None.