WILMINGTON — It was a tale of two halves Friday night at Fred Summers Court, as New Richmond battled back from a 10-point deficit at halftime and defeated Wilmington in SBAAC American Division action 52-49.
Wilmington falls to 1-4 on the season and 1-1 in SBAAC play. New Richmond is 2-1 overall, 2-0 in the American Division.
On the strength of four three-pointers, Wilmington jumped out to a 30-20 lead at intermission. New Richmond, who came into the game averaging 60 points per contest, caught fire in the second half, outscoring WHS 32-19 to claim the victory.
Acting head coach Todd Cook told the WHS squad at halftime that too many missed layups in the first half, might be a big factor down the stretch, and unfortunately he was correct.
“In the first half, we really dominated and should have built a bigger margin. Once they (New Richmond) got rolling, that momentum was hard to stop. Once again, we went cold in the second half and we let a possible win get away. We just seemed to be too reliant on the three and those shots weren’t falling.”
Wilmington jumped out to a 19-8 first quarter lead and the Lions could not buy a bucket until the final two minutes of the opening period. Brady Vilvens buried a high arching corner trey as the first half buzzer sounded, the ‘Cane rode a 30-20 margin into the locker room.
The second half was so much different. New Richmond steadily chipped away at the deficit and pulled within a basket, 37-35, after three periods.
Being outscored by a 10-7 margin in the final quarter, Wilmington fell behind, before Matt Butcher buried a long-distance trey from the top of the circle at the 1:40 mark, 45-45.
Wilmington was forced to foul and the Lions converted 9 of their 14 free throws in the final period to salt away the victory.
Vilvens led the Hurricane attack with 14 points (seven in each half), Butcher followed with 13, including a trio of three-pointers.
For the Lions, Justin Ackerman and Shep Lansaw tied for team-high honors for the Lions with 18 each.
Perhaps the biggest stat of the night was the free throw shooting, as New Richmond went to the line 26 times, converting 18. Wilmington went to the line just three times, but converted each chance.
Wilmington travels to Cincinnati Northwest in a non-conference game Saturday evening, with varsity only. Tip-off will be at 6 p.m.
Dec 18, 2020
@Fred Summers Court
New Richmond 52 Wilmington 49
(52) NEW RICHMOND (fg-3fg-ft-tp) Pollard 0-0-1-1, Snider 1-0-0-2, Hess 1-0-3-5, Sininger 3-0-2-8, Ernst 1-0-0-2, Lansaw 5-3-3-18, Ackerman 4-1-9-18. TOTALS 15-4-18-52.
(49) WILMINGTON (fg-3fg-ft-tp) Butcher 4-3-2-13, Glass 3-2-0-8, Vilvens 6-1-1—14, Blessing 2-0-0-4, Baltazar 3-0-0-6, France 2-0-0-4, Griffith 0-0-0-0, Miller 0-0-0-0. TOTALS 20-6-3-49.
Bill Liermann covers college and high school sports for the News Journal. Follow him on Twitter @lierjet.