MERCERVILLE, Ohio — A flare for the dramatic.
The South Gallia boys basketball team didn’t lead Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division guest until the 17 second mark of the fourth period when sophomore guard Joseph Ehman hit a three pointer from the corner, giving SGHS the 65-63 lead. The Falcons’ last second three-point attempt fell short and the Rebels remain perfect in the league with a 65-63 win.
The Falcons (3-5, 2-2 TVC Hocking) scored on the game’s opening possession and South Gallia (5-1, 4-0) battled to tie the game at 4-4 just a few minutes in. Miller rallied with 9-5 run to take a 13-9 advantage through one quarter of play.
The MHS offense got hot in the second quarter, marking a trio of three pointers en route to 19 points in the quarter. South Gallia countered with an inside attack as Landon Hutchinson went off for 10 points in the period. South Gallia marked 20 in the second and trailed 32-29 at the half.
The Red and Gold kept working the ball inside after the intermission, with Hutchinson scoring 10 of the Rebels 18 points in the third quarter. It was Miller that got the better of the third as they marked 21 points in the period.
South Gallia finally slowed the Falcons in the fourth quarter and slowly worked its way back. With 53 seconds left in the game Ethan Spurlock gave the Rebels their first tie since 4-to-4 with a layup in traffic to knot the game at 62. MHS guard Elijah Rader hit one of two attempts from the free throw line on the Falcons next possession to allow the Purple and Black to regain the lead. With 17 seconds on the clock trailing 63-62 Rebel sophomore Joesph Ehman hit a three pointer to win the game for SGHS by a count of 65-62.
Hutchinson led South Gallia with 23 points, followed by Brayden Greer with 20. Spurlock marked 12 points, Ehman had seven, all of which came after halftime, and Ethan Swain marked three points. Ehman, Swain and Greer each hit one three-pointer for the Rebels, while SGHS as a team shot 8-of-14 (57.1 percent) from the free throw line.
Miller was led by Hunter Starlin with 24 points and Elijah Rader with 17. Both Rader and Starlin connected for a quartet of three-pointers in the setback. Colton Pargeon and Garrett Sinift each had eight points, while Cody McKnight had four points and was the only non-starter that scored in the entire game. Austin Doughty rounded out the MHS total with two points in the setback. Miller was 7-of-12 (58.3 percent) from the free throw line in the game.
The Rebels and Falcons will do battle again on Valentines Day, February 14 in Hemlock.