RACINE, Ohio — A win is a win, no matter how small the margin.
The Southern boys basketball team is still unbeaten thanks to a 49-48 come-from-behind victory over non-conference guest River Valley, on Saturday in Meigs County.
The Raiders (1-3) — who have now dropped three straight decisions — took a 10-9 lead through one quarter of play, but Southern (3-0) outscored its guest 14-to-9 in the second canto and held a 23-19 advantage halftime.
River Valley outscored SHS 17-to-8 in the third period, and the Silver and Black headed into the finale ahead 36-31.
However, RVHS made just 4-of-10 free throws in the final period, opening the door for a Tornado comeback. Southern outscored the Raiders 18-to-12 over the final eight minutes of play, giving SHS the 49-48 win.
For the game, Southern shot 17-of-55 (30.9 percent) from the field, including 7-of-18 (38.9 percent) from beyond the arc. Meanwhile, River Valley was 17-of-46 (37 percent) from the field, including 3-of-8 (37.5 percent) from deep. Both teams struggled from the charity stripe, as the Tornadoes were 8-of-17 (47.1 percent) and the Raiders were 11-of-21 (52.4 percent).
River Valley held a 37-to-31 advantage in rebounding, but the Tornadoes had a 9-to-8 edge in assists. SHS committed 17 turnovers in the win, while the Raiders gave the ball away 21 times.
SHS sophomore Weston Thorla connected on five three pointers and led all scorers with 16 points. Crenson Rogers and Trey Pickens both scored 12 points for the Purple and Gold, with Pickens pulling in a team-best 11 rebounds. Next for the victors was Dylan Smith with seven points, followed by Tylar Blevins with two points, eight rebounds and a team-high four assists.
RVHS senior Jacob Dovenbarger led the Raiders with 14 points, followed by Dustin Barber with 12. Jarret McCarley posted eight points for the Silver and Black, Tre Craycraft added six, while Jacob Campbell chipped in with four points. Patrick Brown and Ian Polcyn rounded out the River Valley scoring with two points apiece.
Both teams return to league action on Tuesday, with Southern traveling to Wahama and River Valley visiting Wellston.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.