Whew! Eagles win title in 4 OTs

By Steve Sell
January 21, 2018

LOST SPRINGS — They could have played all night.

As it was, Elyria Christian School’s boys needed four overtimes to finally take down tournament host Centre on Saturday, keeping the Eagles undefeated on the year.

The Eagles won the exhaustive game 60-57 as they will remain No. 1 in Class 1A Division II.

“It will be a game we remember, both teams gave everything to come out on top and we were fortunate to make a few more plays,” Elyria Christian coach Zach Goodrich said. “We grew this week, having to play three games in three days is tough, but I believe our boys came together and learned how to make adjustments from game-to-game without any practice time.

“Centre made some big shots and we were able to match their big plays with our own. The bench stepped up tonight, we had a bit of foul trouble and with the extra overtimes we had some players foul out. (Tyler) Huxman, (Cross) Allen, and Jacob Nelson were solid throughout the 4 overtimes. Aidan Fields really stepped up when our three starters fouled out, he was terrific on the boards and was able to get to the basket when our offense was struggling from the outside. Huxman hit some big shots down the stretch and kept the pressure on Centre to play us honest on the offensive end.”

Fields scored 18 points to lead the Eagles, while Huxman had 11. The game was tight throughout, with the Eagles’ largest lead being 7 and the Cougars were up by 6.

Tyler Thiessen had 11 rebounds and Fields 10 as Elyria had 54 for the game.

• Solomon girls 27, Elyria Christian 23 — The Eagles wound up taking sixth place in the low-scoring game.

“This was definitely a tale of two halves,” ECS coach Greg Fields said. “Solomon came out hitting some tough shots in the third quarter and it seemed to open up the floodgates. I thought our girls did a nice job keeping their composure after we let a big lead slip away. We executed our halfcourt offense for the most part and continued to play solid defense in the fourth quarter.  We need to find a way to finish our open looks that we get and control the ball a little better under pressure.”

Elyria led 15-2 at the half, but Solomon outscored the Eagles 19-4 in the third quarter to totally swing the game. Melea Redenbaugh led ECS with an 8-point, 13-rebound effort. Bailey Unruh also scored 8 points.