CEDARVILLE — If someone would’ve told Greeneview coach Kyle Fulk his Rams team would limit then-Ohio Heritage Conference scoring leader Colby Cross to six points, the coach would’ve felt pretty good about his chances of winning.
Cross finished with a season-low six points in Tuesday’s Dec. 17 contest at Cedarville High, but teammates Trent Koning and Isaiah Ramey picked up for him, as host Cedarville won the battle between South Division leaders, 48-43.
The Indians put together the game’s biggest scoring run in the third quarter, and that ultimately was the difference in this very defensive-minded brawl between State Route 72 foes.
Moments after Greeneview’s Cole Allen scored from the right baseline to give the Rams a 25-23 lead, Cedarville reeled off an 8-0 scoring run to give the Indians the lead for good. In a team effort, Ramey scored off a Caleb McKinion rebound, Hunter Baldwin then took a nice pass from Koning for a score, Koning then hit a jumper, and then Cross fired a pass for another Ramey score, to give the Indians a 31-25 lead with 4:57 still to play in the third quarter.
Greeneview got within three points of the lead on four different occasions the rest of the way, but could get no closer.
Ramey and Koning both credited the Indians’ defensive effort with nabbing the key win. Cedarville (6-1 overall, 4-0 in the OHC) is all alone at the top of the OHC South standings with the win. They’ll head to Greenon for their first contest as division leaders at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 20, which will ultimately be their final game of 2019 before the holiday break.
Tuesday’s loss was Greeneview’s first of the season, as they drop into second place in the OHC South with a 5-1 overall, 3-1 OHC mark.
“We locked down on defense,” Ramey said. “We had really good help-side defense.”
Ramey looked over to his coach, Ryan Godlove, and saw his coach smiling and nodding his head in agreement.
Godlove was still hoarse from screaming from the sidelines, but he still wore a pretty big smile.
“We talked in the beginning of the year, that in order to be a good team, the offense was going to be there, but we felt that (the team’s defensive play) was going to push us to reach the goals that we wanna reach,” Godlove said.
Koning led the Indians with 16 points, but he was in agreement with his teammate and his coach on what truly made the difference in Tuesday night’s battle with the Rams.
“Our focus was defense. We knew that if we could stop their best three — Rhett (Burtch), Cole (Allen) and (Gabe) Caudill — that we’d have a shot. Those are three good ball players,” Koning added. “That was the key for us on defense.”
Ramey finished with 15 points, Hunter Baldwin finished with seven points and several key rebounds, and Cross got his six to lead the Indians scoring effort.
“It was that kind of game where you needed one kid to take one more big play — to take a charge or to get a crucial rebound,” Greeneview’s Fulk said. “I was very impressed with Cedarville’s defense. We thought there were some things we could take advantage of, and they just weren’t there tonight. Hats off to them.”
For Greeneview, Burtch finished with a game-high 17 points, Allen knocked in a dozen, while the Caudills (Gabe and Ethen) finished with 10 and four points respectively. The Rams will host South Charleston Southeastern on Friday, Dec. 20 for a 7:30 p.m. game.
Contact John Bombatch at 937-372-4444, Ext. 2123