Vikings rally for road win over Bulldogs

Teays Valley completed a comeback with a fourth quarter run on Saturday to remain undefeated inside the Mid-State League Buckeye Division with a 64-56 win over host Bloom-Carroll.

The Vikings (11-3, 10-0) swept the season-series from the Bulldogs (8-5, 7-3) in another classic matchup. Teays Valley needed overtime to defeat Bloom-Carroll 66-63 earlier this month in the first meeting.

Bloom-Carroll was able to get off to a strong start and took a 15-6 lead after a quarter of play, but the Vikings were able to battle back in the second quarter to tie the score at 27-27 headed into halftime.

“It was a fun and exciting game to be part of,” Teays Valley coach Brian Barnett said. “I was not sure when we got down 9-0 in the early part of the first quarter and were down as many as 12 in the period, but our guys never panicked and stayed the course.”

Freshmen Kole Nungester and Brody Fields combined for 13 points during the second quarter and Ryan Allton accounted for six.

Bloom-Carroll was able to edge the Vikings in the third quarter to take a two-point lead into the final eight minutes of competition.

That’s when the Vikings made their move by outscoring the Bulldogs 23-13.

“We thought that being tied at half was a win for us, especially with the way we started,” Barnett said. “We made some adjustments at half and were able to control the pace and flow of the game in the second half. Our defense forced Bloom-Carroll into some tough shots.”

The Vikings were a near perfect 17 of 19 (89.5 percent) from the free throw line in the fourth quarter, when they scored 10 of the final 12 points of the contest.

“We were able to make plays defensively and connect at the free throw line to seal a big-league road win for us,” Barnett said. “I am extremely happy for our guys, because they have battled all year and put in a ton of time to get to this point.”

Fields led all scorers with 23 points for the Vikings, Sam Miller tallied 14, Nungester had 13 and Allton accounted for 10.

“That was probably Sam’s best game all season,” Barnett said. “He battled inside and scored in every period, plus he hauled in double digit rebounds.”

Barnett also complimented the glass work of senior Ivan Smith.

“Ivan also did a great job for us tonight playing some key minutes and grabbing big rebounds in both halves,” he said.

Michael Whitcraft scored 19 points and Jackson Wyant added 13 to pace the Bulldogs.

The Vikings host future Ohio Capital Conference Buckeye Division foe Logan on Tuesday for a non-league game.

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