Wilmington had a big fourth quarter to pull away from Blanchester Friday night and post a 73-45 victory in the Bud Phillips Scholarship crossover game at Fred Summers Court.
It was the final home game of the regular season for the Hurricane and several seniors made their final appearance on the WHS hardwood one to remember for the orange and black.
The game came down to the final quarter. After Wilmington built a big first half lead, 31-16, the Wildcats made a third quarter charge to pull within eight. Wilmington turned it up in the final quarter, outscoring the Wildcats 26-6 to post the win.
Wilmington had four players in double figures, led by Cam Coomer with 17. Senior Steven Sweeney added 14, which included four three-pointers and some crucial shots early in the final period.
Senior Sam Jacobyansky added 13 and Matt Butcher scored 12 for the Hurricane.
For Blanchester, high scorer for the Wildcats was Tanner Creager with 14, while Brayden Sipple scored just 11.
Igniting the spark for the Hurricane in the fourth quarter was non-starter Sweeney who nailed a three-pointer, then a steal with a layup to enable WHS to put the spread back to double digits.
The Wildcats turned it over 18 times. Wilmington cut down on its turnovers with just eight.
It was a strong effort for the Hurricane at the free throw line, as WHS converted 11 of its 13 chances. The Wildcats struggled from the line, as they converted just 6 of 17 opportunities.
Following the contest Wilmington head coach Mike Noszka addressed the crowd over the public address system, as he has done following the teams home finale in recent years. He recognized each of the senior players, speaking of their individual contributions, and a collective effort as a senior unit for the Hurricane basketball program.
Wilmington will begin tournament play in the boys Division II Sectional at Mason High School 3 p.m. Feb. 23 against Cincinnati Aiken.
Blanchester will play at Princeton High School on Feb. 27, facing Finneytown at 7:30 p.m.
February 15, 2019
@Fred Summers Court
Wilmington 73 Blanchester 45
(45) BLANCHESTER (2fg-3fg-ft-tp) Heeg 2-1-1-8, Creager 5-1-1-14, Sipple 4-0-3-11, Waialae 0-1-0-3, Ashcraft 2-0-1-5, Bare 2-0-1-5. Team Totals: 15-3-6-45.
(73) WILMINGTON (2fg-3fg-ft-tp) Morris 0-2-0-6, Coomer 5-1-4-17, Sweeney 1-4-0-14, Custis 1-0-3-5, Anicic 0-0-0-0, Spears 1-0-0-2, Jacobyansky 3-1-4-13, Vilvens 0-0-0-0, Butcher 3-2-0-12, Stewart 2-0-0-4. Team Totals 16-10-11-73.
Bill Liermann covers college and high school sports for the News Journal. Follow him on Twitter @lierjet.