Friday, Jul 29, 2016
One of America's Great Newspapers ~ Toledo, Ohio

High School

Lake tops Rossford in NBC showdown

Flyers build big lead, hold off late charge for 75-69 win

  • Lake-players-celebrate-their-75-69-victory-over-Rossford

    Lake players celebrate their 75-69 victory over Rossford.

    <The Blade/Lori King
    Buy This Image

  • Lake-s-Connor-Bowen-shoots-over-R

    Lake's Connor Bowen shoots over Rossford's Brian Burks during 2nd half.

    <The Blade/Lori King
    Buy This Image

  • Rossford-s-Eric-Davis-passes-in-front-of-Lake-s-Brandyn-Neal

    Rossford's Eric Davis passes in front of Lake's Brandyn Neal.

    <The Blade/Lori King
    Buy This Image

  • Lake-s-Connor-Bowen-flies-over-Rossford-defenders

    Lake's Connor Bowen flies over Rossford defenders.

    <The Blade/Lori King
    Buy This Image

Lake-s-Connor-Bowen-shoots-over-R

Lake's Connor Bowen shoots over Rossford's Brian Burks during 2nd half.

The Blade/Lori King
Enlarge | Buy This Image

MILLBURY — Lake built a seemingly commanding 25-point lead in the third quarter Tuesday night, then held off a late charge from Rossford in escaping with a 75-69 boys basketball victory in a showdown for first place in the Northern Buckeye Conference.

Junior point guard Connor Bowen led Lake (18-1, 11-1 NBC) with 30 points, 11 assists, five rebounds, and four steals.

PHOTO GALLERY: Lake holds off Rossford

Lake, Ohio’s eighth-ranked Division II team, also got 14 points from Cody Witt and 10 apiece from Todd Walters and Jacob Rettig. The Flyers need to win one of their two remaining games (Otsego and Woodmore) to clinch at least a share of the NBC title.

Rossford (12-5, 9-2 NBC) trailed 53-28 after a Jared Rettig 3-pointer for Lake with 6 minutes, 18 seconds left in the third quarter. But the Bulldogs pulled within 70-67 on a basket from Derek Mack with 1:31 left.

“The kids won the first half, and our coaches had to win the second half,” Lake coach Ryan Bowen said. “We almost blew it for them because we did some pretty dumb things in the second half.”

Triggering the comeback was senior guard Mack Miller, who scored 17 of his team-high 20 points in the final 14 minutes.

The Flyers regrouped and iced the game by hitting 5 of 8 free throws in the final minute.

Rossford also got 16 points from Mack, plus 13 points and 18 rebounds off the bench from senior forward Brian Burks.

Lake won both NBC meetings between the teams this season, including 67-65 in overtime on Jan. 10 at Rossford.

Lake started out on fire, bolting to a 26-16 lead after one quarter on the strength of five 3-pointers. The Flyers were 8 for 13 on 3-pointers in the first half, which closed with Lake on top 46-28.

“Our problem is we get out of our defensive rotations,” Rossford coach Brian Vorst said of Lake’s first-half flurry. “We didn’t stay within our game plan at all in the first half, and we did a much better job in the second half.”

No one was more productive in building this lead than Bowen, who scored 16 of his points in the final 10 minutes of the half. He had nine assists by the break.

“We came into the game energized on our home court,” Connor Bowen said. “We had a lot of fans here, and we came to play and have fun.

“We had that big lead and they started cutting it slowly and got it down to three. We were like, ‘Hey, let’s go guys. We’ve got to get into this game.’ We had to get back to scoring and doing what we’re good at.”

Bowen had hit a pair of baskets to open the half, and then Jared Rettig’s 3-pointer gave Lake its 25-point lead. Miller answered with a free throw, then a driving layup to begin the Rossford surge.

“You’re up 25 and then shots start to not fall and [Rossford] starts making some big shots,” coach Bowen said. “Before you know it, you’re in a game. But our kids stayed consistent, battled, and got a pretty tough win tonight.”

Contact Steve Junga at: sjunga@theblade.com, or 419-724-6461 or on Twitter@JungaBlade.

Click to comment

Quis autem vel eum iure reprehenderit qui in ea voluptate velit esse quam nihil molestiae consequatur, vel illum qui dolorem?

Temporibus autem quibusdam et aut officiis debitis aut rerum necessitatibus saepe eveniet.

Copyright © 2015 Toledo Blade

To Top

Fetching stories…