TUPPERS PLAINS, Ohio — The middle made the difference.
The Southern boys basketball team outscored host Eastern by a 36-to-21 count in the second and third quarters combined on Thursday at ‘the Nest’, leading the Purple and Gold to a 57-40 victory in Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division play.
Southern (3-12, 2-7 TVC Hocking) — which topped EHS (0-14, 0-10) by a 45-25 count on Jan. 15 in Racine — led 8-6 after hitting four field goals in the opening quarter on Thursday.
The Tornadoes outscored the Eagles 14-to-10 in the second period and led 22-16 at halftime. SHS pulled away with a 22-to-11 third quarter, and headed into the finale on top 44-27.
Each side scored 13 in the fourth quarter, as the guests capped off the 57-40 victory.
For the game, SHS made 24 field goals, including seven three-pointers, while EHS made 16 field goals, including a trio of triples. At the foul line, the Tornadoes made 5-of-10 (50 percent), while the Eagles sank 6-of-14 (42.9 percent).
Cade Anderson led Southern with 21 points, 15 of which came on second half three-pointers. Arrow Drummer was next with 12 points, followed by Lincoln Rose with 10, Ryan Laudermilt with eight, and Aiden Hill with four. Tanner Lisle rounded out the winning tally with two points.
Leading Eastern, Isaiah Reed and Bryce Newland scored 11 and 10 points respectively. Brayden O’Brien scored seven points for the hosts, Trey Hill added six, while Owen Johnson chipped in with three. Ethan Short and Brad Hawk came up with two points apiece for the Green and White.
After wrapping up conference play, both teams will play tournament road games on Wednesday, with the Tornadoes at Green, and the Eagles at Western.
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Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.