By John Bombatch
XENIA — Maybe the Xenia Buccaneers should require all of their opponents to show up late.
Trailing by seven points at halftime (37-30) to Dayton Meadowdale, Xenia outscored the Lions 28-21 in regulation, then blanked the visitors in overtime for a 69-58 win.
An assignment mixup left the Meadowdale freshman team with a bus, but no driver, on Tuesday. By the time a driver could be found to drive the Lions the half hour or so drive to Xenia High School, the freshman game began more than an hour later than originally scheduled.
That initial delay put the junior varsity contest (won by Meadowdale, 47-44) and the varsity contest behind as well. Tuesday’s varsity contest tipped off at 8:40 p.m., an hour and 10 minutes later than its scheduled original 7:30 p.m. tip-off time.
It was nearly 9:30 p.m. when the two varsity teams returned to the court for the second half.
Anyone who left XHS because they had something to do in the morning (or had a newspaper deadline to make), well, they missed out on a pretty good Buccaneer comeback.
Xenia (1-1) outscored Meadowdale 14-9 in the third quarter to pull within two points, 46-44 after 24 minutes of play.
Then the Bucs outscored the Lions 14-12 in the final period to send the contest to overtime.
And in that overtime, to borrow a baseball term, Xenia pitched a shutout. The Buccaneers out-scored Meadowdale, 11-0 in the overtime period to claim their first win of the season.
“What was so amazing about it was (Meadowdale) scored their last bucket at the 3:20 mark of the fourth quarter, went ahead 58-57, and they never scored again,” Xenia coach Kent Anderson said Wednesday. “For as tired as we were at the time, it’s pretty remarkable that we could shut them down in the last 7:20 of an overtime game like that.”
Jay Evans scored 13 of his game-high 22 points in the second half to lead Xenia. Ricky Williams scored 10 of his 16 points in the second half, while Meechi Harris scored nine of his 13 points in the second half to lead the Buccaneers. Williams hit two of his three 3-pointers in the second half, and Te’Andre Adams hit a pair of treys in the game as well.
“In the overtime, we finally got Meechi (Harris) the ball down low and he just took over,” Anderson said. “He scored nine of our 11 points in overtime. I asked him in practice today, I said ‘What sparked that in you?’ He said ‘Coach, I just didn’t wanna lose.’ It was really cool to hear that from him.
“We played such good defense in the last half of the fourth quarter and in overtime. I mean, it’s almost unheard of that you shut someone out in overtime. It was just good defense, the ability to knock down some shots, and it was just a bunch that came together at the right time,” Anderson said.
Meadowdale’s Adren Wilkerson led the Lions (0-2) with 16 points, Ronald Thornton scored 12 points and Brandon McCoy finished with 11 points in the loss.
Xenia next plays Friday, Dec. 9 at Riverside Stebbins, for the first Greater Western Ohio Conference American South Division contest for both schools while Meadowdale will open up Dayton Public Schools League action that same night at Thurgood Marshall.
Anderson said at least four of his injured players could be back in action for Friday’s games. Samari Curtis, Brandon Love and Corey Burnette could all see action against Stebbins. Kobe Hughlett remains sidelined with a broken thumb, however.
You can reach John Bombatch at 937-372-4444, Ext. 2123.