RACINE, Ohio — It’d be tough for anyone to beat a performance like that.
The Waterford boys basketball team sank eight of its first nine three-point attempts Tuesday night, leading the Wildcats to a 74-38 victory over Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division host Southern.
Waterford (1-0, 1-0 TVC Hocking) hit six first quarter trifectas and outscored Southern (0-3, 0-2) 20-to-8 over the opening eight minutes. The Wildcats pulled down nine more rebounds than SHS in the second quarter alone, helping WHS push its lead to 39-12 at halftime.
The Green and White pushed their advantage to 31 points early in the third period, but the Tornadoes finished the third with an 11-4 run. SHS, which outrebounded Waterford 9-to-7 in the third, trailed 50-26 headed into the fourth quarter.
The Wildcats were successful on 9-of-14 field goal attempts over the final eight minutes, helping to cap off the 74-38 triumph.
“In the third quarter we played some good basketball and I thought we had some kids out there competing,” Southern head coach Jeff Caldwell said. “We’re struggling right now but if I can get more of that type of effort, like we had in the third quarter, we’ll get better.”
The Tornadoes were led by Jonah Hoback with 10 points, followed by Dylan Smith with eight and Blake Johnson with five. Crenson Rogers and Clayton Wood both marked four points, Weston Thorla added three, while Brayden Cunningham and Kody Greene each had two points.
Rogers led SHS on the glass with nine rebounds, followed by Trey Pickens with five and Jaylen Blanks with four. Wood and Rodgers led the SHS defense with two steals each, while Wood marked a team-best five assists.
Southern shot 5-of-21 (23.8) from the free throw line and 14-of-48 (29.2 percent) from the field, including 5-of-21 (23.8 percent) from beyond the arc. As a team the Purple and Gold had 24 rebounds, seven assists, eight steals and 23 turnovers.
Waterford’s Bryce Hilverding posted game-highs in points with 22, assists with six, and steals with four, while Isaac Huffman had 11 points and a team-best eight rebounds. Jordan Welch and Riley Burns each had eight points for the Wildcats, while Tyler McCutcheon added seven and Cody Harris had six. Montana Brooker and Travis Pottmeyer each marked five points, while Colton Campbell finished with two.
The Green and White shot 15-of-25 (60 percent) from the charity stripe, 25-of-55 (45.5 percent) from the field and 9-of-17 (52.9 percent) from beyond the arc. As a team WHS marked 39 rebounds, 18 assists, 16 steals, two blocks and 16 turnovers.
Southern will attempt to flip the script on January 19, when the Purple and Gold visit Waterford. SHS returns to action on Friday night when 3-1 South Gallia travels to Racine.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.