STEWART, Ohio — Starting the season in style.
The Southern boys basketball team rolled to a 61-25 victory over Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division host Federal Hocking, in the Tornadoes season opener, on Tuesday in McInturf Gymnasium.
The Tornadoes (1-0, 1-0 TVC Hocking) connected on five trifectas in the opening stanza, and led 19-6 eight minutes into play.
Southern outscored the Lancers (0-4, 0-1) 20-to-5 in the second quarter, and the Purple and Gold held a 39-11 lead at the break.
The Tornadoes led 55-20 at the conclusion of the third quarter and outscored FHHS 6-to-5 over the final eight minutes, sealing the 61-25 victory.
SHS was outrebounded 32-to-29 in the game, but held an 18-to-5 advantage in assists and a 16-to-4 edge in steals. The Purple and Gold committed 17 turnovers in the win, seven fewer than FHHS.
Southern shot 24-of-58 (41.4 percent) from the field, including 8-of-25 (32 percent) from long range. The Tornadoes also made 5-of-7 free throw attempts, equaling 71.4 percent.
Meanwhile, the Lancers were 4-of-10 (40 percent) from the free throw stripe and 10-of-38 (26.3 percent) from the field, including just 1-of-10 (10 percent) from beyond the arc.
SHS senior Crenson Rogers led all scorers with 18 points, followed by Tylar Blevins with 16 and Blake Johnson with 11. Dylan Smith poured in seven points for the victors, Weston Thorla added five, while Eli Hunter and Trey Pickens both finished with two markers.
Rogers and Pickens led the Tornadoes on the glass with six rebounds apiece. Jonah Hoback marked a team-best five assists, followed by Clayton Wood with three. Smith paced the SHS defense with five steals, while Johnson and Kody Greene each had three steals.
Brandon Gould led the hosts with eight points, followed by Jared Hawk and Michael Johns with five apiece. Walker Church and Deakin Hatfield rounded out the FHHS offense with four and three points respectively. This is the first time in its four games so far this season that Federal Hocking has surpassed 20 points.
Southern will look to sweep FHHS on February 7, when the Lancers invade Racine.
The Tornadoes are back in action on Friday, when Miller visits Meigs County for a TVC Hocking showdown. Federal Hocking will visit Waterford on Friday.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.