GALLIPOLIS, Ohio — A big third quarter went a long way at this Homecoming celebration.
The Ohio Valley Christian boys basketball team used a pivotal 25-7 surge out of halftime and ultimately cruised to a 64-44 victory over visiting Sugar Creek Christian Academy on Friday night in a non-conference matchup in the Old French City.
The host Defenders (7-12) received seven points from Mark Oliver in the opening frame en route to a 14-11 edge, then the senior big-man poured in another five markers during a 10-4 surge that resulted in a 24-15 intermission advantage.
OVCS made a 10-5 run out of the break, but a Landen Phillips basket at the 4:52 mark of the third trimmed the deficit down to 34-22. The Eagles, however, were never closer the rest of the way.
The Blue and Gold got 10 points from Oliver during a 13-0 charge over the final 4:15 of the third stanza, allowing the hosts to secure a commanding 49-22 lead.
Cash Burnett hit a trifecta nine seconds into the finale and gave the Defenders their largest lead of the game at 52-22. SCCA was never closer than 60-42 with 1:46 left in regulation.
The hosts made 27 total field goals — including a trio of 3-pointers — and also netted 7-of-11 free throw attempts for 64 percent.
Oliver paced Ohio Valley Christian with a game-high 22 points and Bradley Haley followed with 13 points. Burnett and Jeremiah Swab were next with seven points each, while Conner Walter added six markers.
Joel Daugherty and Austin Beaver respectively added four and three points, with Aaron Hall completing the winning tally with two points.
The Eagles made 19 total field goals — including three trifectas — and also sank all three of their charity tosses.
Elijah Neel led SCCA with 21 points, followed by Landen Phillips with nine points. Anthony McKee and Ian McKee were next with six markers apiece, while Isaac Phillips rounded things out with two points.
The Defenders return to action Friday when they host Parkersburg Christian as the latter part of a varsity girls-boys doubleheader that begins at 6 p.m.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.