Faster pace propels Vikings to win over Tigers

by JOHN HOWLEY / sportingpumpkin.com

Once Teays Valley got the pace of play going its way, the Vikings took a close game and turned it into a 54-43 win at Circleville Tuesday. 

Circleville had a couple bucket lead late in the first half but the Vikings closed as the pace picked up and it as 21-20 Circleville at the half. 

TV got on top with an 18-8 third quarter. 

“The third quarter in our last five or six ballgames, seven ballgames maybe, has been a real dud for us,” TV coach Brian Barnett said. “We just haven’t played very well. So our whole focus has been on the third quarter coming out ready to go. What do we need to do to get us ready to go? We tried a few different things and tonight it worked.”

What they did was to switch up defenses to get Circleville to put up some bad shots and turn those misses into points. 

“We went man-to-man some, we went zone some, we went some 2-2-1, we went some diamond – anything to throw them off and make them think a little bit and to get the game going up and down, up and down,” Barnett said. “Circleville does a great job being patient with the ball on the offensive end. When we have to guard that long, sometimes we get caught up and lose who we’re guarding. 

“Our focus was trying to get the pace and the tempo up. Once we got it up, we forced them into some quick shots which they weren’t able to hit, thankfully, we grabbed some boards and got into transition. And when we get into transition, we’re pretty good.”

Teays Valley’s Sam Miller goes up for two of his game-high 17 points.

“We played into their style. They’re a very good transition team and we knew if we got into a rat race with them, we would struggle,” Circleville coach Cody Carpenter said. “We started trying to run and were forcing up shots and they made that little comeback. We talked about it at half that we can’t get in a rat race with them.”

TV’s Sam Miller had eight of his game-high 17 in the third quarter while Jackson Smith had six and Peyton Weiler added four. 

Barnett said the Vikings didn’t make any changes offensively at halftime, it was a matter of executing.

“The talk at halftime was to stay with what we’re doing. We had a lot of great shots in the first half and some of them just didn’t go down. We’re not changing everything we’re doing just because we’re not making shots,” he said. “They had to believe in themselves and what we’re doing.”

Briley Cramer led Circleville with 14 points and Ian Warden had 11. 

“I thought we battled well and played hard. We just kind of shot ourselves in the foot by playing their game,” Carpenter said. “Their full court press is designed, not to get turnovers but to make the offense break it and rush up a shot. That’s exactly what we did. They baited us into it and we missed, they came back and scored buckets. 

“I’m proud of our effort tonight but we’ve got to be mentally tougher.”

With the regular season coming to a close, it was the final home game for three Tiger players. 

“I’ve been very proud of the leadership of Craig Fleck, Trevor Coleman and Drew “Money” Moats,” Carpenter said. “What we needed out of them more than anything was that leadership off the floor. Things on the floor, you need that but it’s the things off the floor if we’re trying to build this program from our leadership. And they answered the call for that. I love the guys, I’m proud of them and I couldn’t ask for anything more.”

Up next

Neither team gets a chance to rest up. 

Teays Valley (8-11, 7-5) has its final home game tomorrow with Lancaster coming for a visit and then the Vikings are at Liberty Union Friday. Their final regular season game is Feb. 17 at Hamilton Township.

Circleville (5-15, 2-10) heads to Liberty Union tomorrow and finishes off the regular season slate at Hamilton Township Friday. 

Teays Valley 54, Circleville 43

Teays Valley — Kevin Scott 1-0-2, Cameron Rogers-Dyas 5-2-12, Ryan Alton 1-0-3, Peyton Weiss 5-0-12, Jackson Smith 2-2-8, Sam Miller 8-1-17. Three-point goals — Alton, Weiler (2), Smith (2). Total — 22-5-54.

Circleville — Drew Moats 1-0-2, Briley Cramer 6-1-14, Trevor Coleman 2-1-7, Winston Jones 1-0-3, Parker Kidwell 1-0-2, Ian Warden 5-0-11, Craig Fleck 1-1-4. Three-point goals — Cramer, Coleman (2), Jones, Warden, Fleck. Total — 17-3-43.

Quarter scores 1 2 3 4 F

Teays Valley 10 10 18 16 54

Circleville 10 11 8 14 43

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