Louisville Hands Minerva 1st NBC Loss to Force 3-Way Tie – Boys Basketball

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Louisville 55, Minerva 45

Louisville Leopards Basketball White Shirt - Beatty's Sports Christmas 2017The Louisville Leopards Boys Varsity Basketball Team defeated the visiting Minerva Lions 55-45 Tuesday Night at Louisville High School. With the victory, the Leopards improve to 7-2 overall and 4-1 in conference play. Louisville now sits in a three-way tie for first place with Marlington (6-2, 5-1) and Minerva (7-3, 5-1) in the loss column. The Leopards handed both teams their only league loss of the year.

Grove Appliance Alliance Ohio AdBrandon Wahl scored 10 of his game-high 19 points in the fourth quarter to lead the Leopards. Wahl hit a pair of three-pointers in the final period and finished with 3 of Louisville’s 4 makes from beyond the arch for the game. Spencer Hall keyed the Leopards by dropping home 5 of his 11 points in the final eight minutes. Max Hartline also scored 8 and Davis Burick added 6.

Louisville pulled ahead 10-4 to start the game, but Minerva used a 13-2 run to grab their largest lead of the night at 17-12. The Leopards battled back to knot the game at 23-23 by halftime.

The two teams battled back-and-forth during a hard fought third quarter. Brice Williams scored on a lay in with 2:34 left to play to put the Lions ahead 30-29. Williams had accounted for half of Minerva’s points up through that make, but wouldn’t score again the rest of the way.

Two big baskets ended the Louisville third quarter. Bryce Zuppe fed long bounce pass into the lane to Hall who extended and laid it off the glass for 2. Two possessions later, Zuppe came down with a huge offensive board and kicked to Cam King in the left corner. King hit home the three-pointer to give the Leopards a 34-30 cushion, which they would take into the final period.

Louisville started the fourth quarter with all the momentum. Hall came down with offensive boards on back-to-back possessions which led to his own scores. He drew a foul on the first one and took advantage of the charity point. The second putback gave the Leopards a 39-30 lead forcing a Lions timeout and sending the Louisville players to the bench in a frenzy of emotion.

Minerva chipped into the the Leopard lead, but could get no closer than 46-41. With the Lions trapping, Wahl was left wide open in the right corner and he capitalized with his third three-ball of the night. The Louisville defense shutdown Minerva on their next three possessions and Hall pulled down a rebound off a missed 1-and-1. He kicked ahead to Wahl who had no desire to stall in rolling right to the rack for the left-handed layup. That bulged the Leopard led to double digits at 51-41 and they cruised from there.

Connor Wright scored 10 of his team-high 16 points in the fourth quarter to lead the Lions. Williams also finished with 15 and Brock Croston hit double figures with 10 for Minerva.

With the victory, the Leopards have now won 16 of their past 17 meetings against the Lions including the last 9 in the series at home. This was the 159th all-time meeting between the two rivals dating back to 1926, with Louisville leading the all-time series 91-68. The Leopards are also 42-17 against the Lions in NBC games with their final league matchup scheduled for February 9 at Minerva.


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UP NEXT: The Leopards will next hit the road to take on the West Branch Warriors on Friday, January 12. JV will begin at 6:00 PM and Varsity will follow around 7:30 PM from West Branch High School.

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Varsity Statistics

LEOPARDS 55, LIONS 45

Team 1-2-3-4–TOTAL

Minerva 6-17-7-15—45

Louisville 10-13-11-21—55

LIONS: Wright 6 4-4 16, Williams 6 3-5 15, Croston 4 1-2 10, Miller 1 0-0 2, Myers 1 0-0 2, Boord 0 0-1 0. TOTAL 18 8-12 45.

3-Pointers (1): Croston

Team FT: 8-12 67%

LEOPARDS: Wahl 6 4-4 19, Hall 5 1-1 11, Hartline 4 0-1 8, Burick 3 0-0 6, King 1 2-2 5, T. Jones 1 0-0 2, Zeller 1 0-0 2, Zuppe 1 0-1 2. TOTAL 22 7-9 55.

3-Pointers (4): Wahl 3, King

Team FT: 7-9 78%

 

Fouls: 15-13 Minerva

Turnovers: 10-8 Louisville

Records: Louisville 7-2, 4-1; Minerva 7-3, 5-1

JV: Louisville 54, Minerva 36

JV Statistics

LEOPARDS 54, LIONS 36

Team 1-2-3-4–TOTAL

Minerva 6-9-10-11—36

Louisville 15-15-14-10—54

LIONS: Place 4 1-2 11, Greer 3 3-4 9, Lowmiller 2 1-2 5, Catlett 2 0-2 4, Baumgardner 1 0-2 3, McGrath 1 0-0 2, Garlock 0 1-2 1, Sallade 0 1-3 1. TOTAL 13 7-17 36.

3-Pointers (3): Place 2, Baumgardner

Team FT: 7-17 42%

LEOPARDS: Noble 5 1-2 11, Chambers 4 2-2 10, Allen Staley 3 2-4 9, Pukys 3 0-0 8, Pickens 2 0-0 5, Croxton 0 3-4 3, Gronow 1 0-0 3, Hoffman 0 2-2 2, Rode 0 2-2 2, Giles 0 1-2 1. TOTAL 18 13-18 54.

3-Pointers (5): Pukys 2, Pickens, Staley

Team FT: 13-18 72%

 

Fouls: 22-14 Louisville

Turnovers: 14-13 Louisville

Records: Louisville 6-3, 5-0

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