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Published: Friday, 2/29/2008

Perrysburg defense shuts down Findlay

BY DONALD EMMONS
BLADE SPORTS WRITER

FINDLAY - Perrysburg coach Dave Boyce thought going into last night's game that Findlay had the homecourt advantage playing at nearby Liberty-Benton.

But Perrysburg seemed to have more crowd support at the Division I boys district semifinal.

The Yellow Jackets responded by posting a 45-35 victory over the Trojans to advance to the district finals for the first time in team history.

Perrysburg will face Ashland at 8 p.m. tomorrow at Bowling Green State University's Anderson Arena.

"I thought we had a really good defensive effort and I thought we moved the ball really well and that's what helped us get the lead," said Boyce, noting the keys for the win. "But you're playing Findlay and Jim Rucki is a heck of a coach and those kids play hard and you knew they weren't just going to go away."

Sophomore Charlie Hughes generated the most offense for the Yellow Jackets, scoring 16 points, including eight in the third quarter to help Perrysburg (21-1) enter the final period with a comfortable 36-21 advantage.

David Boyce and David Hieber each finished with nine points in a game in which the defenses dictated much of the tempo.

"I just play like every game is the last game of the season," Hughes said.

"I've got to come out with a fire and I've got to try and get big rebounds, score when I can, and try not to turn it over."

Luke Kraus led Findlay with 15 points. Garrett Bugay finished with eight.

The Trojans (13-9) had their chances. Their defense forced Perrysburg into committing 10 turnovers in the second half, but poor shooting negated the solid defensive work.

"We couldn't make a shot and that's the name of the game," Rucki said. "You've got to be able to put the ball in the basket, especially against a team like them.

"We got no second chances. They rebounded well defensively and we had to take advantage of every opportunity we could get, and we didn't do that."

The Yellow Jackets jumped out to an early lead and maintained it through the second quarter, taking a 21-14 advantage into halftime.

For the game, Findlay made 12 of 19 foul shots compared to Perrysburg's 7 of 12.

Contact Donald Emmons at:

demmons@theblade.com

or 419-724-6302.



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