The Van Wert County Courthouse

Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019

Cougars rally but come up short vs. OG

SCOTT TRUXELL/independent sports editor

Trailing 51-32 entering the fourth quarter, Van Wert put a scare into state ranked Ottawa-Glandorf (No. 6, Division III) before falling 62-54 on Friday.

The Cougars (4-6, 1-2 WBL) opened the final period with a 12-0 run to make it a 51-42 game with 4:41 left. The run included a foul shot and three baskets by Nate Place and four free throws by Treece. The duo went on to score all 22 of Van Wert’s fourth quarter points. Place finished with a team high 17 points while Treece scored 10 points. Lawson Blackmore scored 11, with eight coming in the first half.

Lawson Blackmore pulls up for two points against Ottawa-Glandorf. Blackmore went on to score 11 in the game. Bob Barnes/Van Wert independent

Ottawa-Glandorf (9-1, 3-0 WBL) finally got on the board on a foul shot by Braden Fortman at the 3:53 mark and a bucket by Owen Hiegel with 2:30 left in the game. Place and Treece each hit baskets to pull within six, 54-48 with 1:50 left, but the Cougars could draw no closer, as the Titans used the foul line to secure the win, including a 10 for 12 performance by Hiegel, who led all scorers with 23 points.

“I’m pleased about that (the fourth quarter run), but there are no moral victories in our program,” Van Wert head coach Mark Bagley said. “We said all week the game had to be in the low 60s and not because we held the ball but because we defended and rebounded and dead ball turnovers. Unfortunately we had some live ball turnovers that really hurt us.”

Ottawa-Glandorf entered the game averaging 86 points per game but scored the final five points of the first quarter to lead 13-9. A key run came in the second quarter when Carter Heringhaus, Ethan White and Hiegel drilled three successive treys that gave the visitors a 26-16 lead with 3:10 left in the period.

The Titans went on to enjoy a 31-20 halftime lead, then outscored the Cougars 20-12 in the third quarter, including a 9-0 run that saw Ottawa-Glandorf scored three consecutive baskets off steals. A fourth steal and basket gave the Titans their biggest lead of the night, 45-22 with 4:17 remaining in the third period.

“Even though they pressured us, they were unforced turnovers that led to direct layups or offensive rebounds and those kind of things,” Bagley said.

Van Wert is scheduled to play at defending Division IV state champion Marion Local tonight.

“If we think it’s going to get easier against Marion Local, it’s not,” Bagley said.

Scoring summary

Van Wert 9 11 12 22 – 54
Ottawa-Glandorf 13 18 20 11 – 62

Van Wert: Owen Treece 3-4-10; Nate Place 7-2-17; LeTrey Williams 2-1-6; Blake Henry 3-0-6; Lawson Blackmore 4-3-11; Drew Bagley 2-0-4

Ottawa-Glandorf: Braden Fortman 1-5-7; Owen Hiegel 6-10-23; Carter Heringhaus 2-0-6; Ethan Alt 1-0-2; Ethan White 4-2-11; Ben Westrick 4-0-8; Seth Salhoff 0-1-1; Owen Nichols 1-0-2; Aaron Rieman 1-0-2

JV: Ottawa-Glandorf won 53-24

POSTED: 01/12/19 at 5:35 am. FILED UNDER: Sports