YELLOW SPRINGS — Neither side had its floor general and needed anyone to step in and take control.
Enter Samuel Miller for Yellow Springs.
The junior scored 25 points and made an important three-pointer late in the fourth quarter to help stave off a charge by Legacy Christian as the Bulldogs held onto a 53-47 home win on Friday.
“The biggest thing we want to convey is we have confidence in our kids but they have to have confidence in themselves,” Yellow Springs head coach Nick Trimbach said of his team’s effort. “Our seniors of Josh Clark and[Ethan and Jason] Knemeyer and then JP Anderson have come so far.”
YS led by eight to start the fourth quarter before Andrew Riddle took over the Knights’ offense and began to lead his team back. LCA briefly tied the score at 46 with just over three minutes remaining but were never able to get over the hump.
The Bulldogs regained a one-point lead as both teams struggled to score down the stretch. Moving the ball side-to-side against the LCA zone, Josh Clark threw a skip pass to Miller who found himself open from the elbow and drained a dagger just before the final minute.
“I wasn’t really sure I wanted him to take it,” Trimbach said. “It was a no, no, yes shot.”
LCA led early before Yellow Springs got hot from deep. The Bulldogs made six shots from beyond the arc, the majority in the second quarter, and pulled out to a 10-point halftime lead.
Their advantage hovered around that mark until LCA began its attempt at a comeback starting in the fourth quarter.
Both teams are currently without their leading scorers, Parker Burke of LCA and Eli Eyrich of Yellow Springs, and looking for leaders on the court.
Miller’s scoring has been key to picking up the lost production, but the senior core of players with experience in the program despite not much playing time in recent years has been crucial to fulfilling the leadership roles needed to stay the course, according to Trimbach.
“He’s come a long way from not playing at all to a few minutes to now starting and becoming our leading scorer,” Trimbach said of Miller. “His growth along with the rest of the team has just been universal considering what happened to the glue of our team in Eli.”
The Bulldogs are now 4-2 since Eyrich’s season ending injury.
Clark added 10 points Shawn VanHoose, Antonio Chaiten and Anderson all scored five. YS shot 9-for-25 from three and during the second half made seven of their nine attempts from two.
LCA was led by 17 points by Riddle, 15 by Jacob Thompson and 11 from Blake Schwartzkopf.
Contact Steven Wright at 937-502-4498 and follow on Twitter @Steven_Wright_.