Raiders fall to Golden Rockets

By Paul Boggs -

WELLSTON, Ohio — Apparently, the Wellston Golden Rockets refueled for the fourth quarter.

Or, perhaps the River Valley Raiders ran out of gas.

Either way, a 10-point fourth-quarter difference indeed doomed the Raiders, which lost 60-50 at Wellston on Thursday night in a Tri-Valley Conference Ohio Division boys basketball makeup matchup.

Only 10 days ago, River Valley vanquished visiting Wellston 66-58 for its only TVC-Ohio victory all year.

With Thursday’s defeat, the Raiders fell to 4-17 — and concluded league play at 1-11.

Wellston, which was upset by the Raiders before another stunning loss at Ohio Valley Christian in overtime (77-66) on Monday, raised its record to 11-8 (4-7 TVC-Ohio).

The Golden Rockets responded on Thursday with a 22-point outburst in the fourth quarter, while the Raiders only had a dozen points in the frame.

The contest, tied after the third quarter 38-38, stood tied again at 42-42 with five minutes and 44 seconds to play.

That’s when Wellston went on an 18-5 run, staking its largest lead (60-47) of the game with 30 seconds remaining.

Tyler Twyman, who hit three three-pointers in the opening quarter for River Valley, made his final three with only two seconds left.

Twyman tallied 18 points and Jacob Dovenbarger 15 for River Valley, as both scored seven field goals, including Dovenbarger with the team’s only other trey.

Kirk Morrow managed 13 points on five field goals and 3-of-5 free throws, as Mark Wray with a field goal and Hollis Morrison with two free throws rounded out the Raiders’ scoring.

River Valley shot a decent 39-percent (20-of-51), but only made five of its 20 three-point tries — and committed 17 turnovers.

The Raiders led 17-14 following the first quarter, as the two teams played to a 15-15 tie in the second.

Wellston was leading 29-26, but Morrow made two free throws before a Dovenbarger dunk and a field goal by Twyman to end the half.

River Valley then went cold in the third quarter, scoring only six points and going 3-of-10 from the field.

Meanwhile, the Golden Rockets began to heat up, as Chazz Davis — who poured in a game-high 25 points on a dozen field goals — scored seven of Wellston’s nine in the period.

Wellston shot an even 50-percent (27-of-50), as Davis, Braydon Womeldorf, Blake Royster and Ryan Hawk had a three-point goal apiece.

Womeldorf followed Davis with 14 points, scoring six field goals, including an old-fashioned three-point play.

Hawk hit three field goals for seven points, while Caleb Stanley and Caden Ervin had two field goals apiece for five and four respectively.

Stanley made the team’s only other free throw along with Womeldorf.

Daivon Newell netted a field goal to round out the Blue and Gold.

Newell made off with five of Wellston’s eight steals, as Davis and Stanley grabbed six rebounds apiece.

River Valley held a slim 28-23 rebound advantage, as Dovenbarger’s dozen gave him a double-double.

Morrow managed seven, while making half of the Raiders’ six steals.

The Raiders returned to the road, and ended regular-season play, on Saturday night at non-league Federal Hocking.

Paul Boggs can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106

By Paul Boggs