GALLIPOLIS, Ohio — Solid … from start to finish.
The Ohio Valley Christian boys basketball team led wire-to-wire while picking up its third straight victory on Monday night during a 66-46 decision over visiting Sciotoville East in a non-conference matchup in the Old French City.
The Defenders (8-12) hit three of their first five shot attempts while storming out to a 7-0 edge three minutes in, and the hosts ultimately led by two possessions the rest of the way.
The Tartans (0-17) missed their first six shot attempts and went just 2-of-16 in the opening frame, closing to within 7-2 with 4:45 remaining on a Hagen Metzler basket. OVCS closed the final 4:32 of the period with a 7-3 run and took a 14-5 edge after eight minutes of play.
Mark Oliver helped the hosts put things out of reach in the second canto as the senior big man scored 17 points as part of a 26-8 surge that gave Ohio Valley Christian a commanding 40-13 lead at the break.
The Defenders shot 50 percent from the field in the third quarter and used a small 12-9 run to extend their cushion out to 52-22 entering the finale.
SECS ended regulation with a 24-14 surge that included a 12-0 run over the final four minutes of the contest. OVCS took its largest lead of the game with 4:21 remaining as Austin Beaver converted a basket for a 64-31 advantage.
The Defenders outrebounded the guests by a 41-31 overall margin, but the Tartans claimed a 12-9 edge on the offensive boards. OVCS also committed 28 of the 46 turnovers in the contest.
Ohio Valley Christian netted 22-of-50 field goal attempts for 44 percent, including a 1-of-3 effort from behind the arc for 33 percent. The hosts were also 21-of-35 at the free throw line for 60 percent.
Oliver — who converted five different old-fashioned 3-point plays — paced the hosts with a double-double effort of 29 points and 12 rebounds, both of which were game-highs.
Conner Walter was next with a double-double effort of 12 points and 11 rebounds, while Bradley Haley and Joel Daugherty respectively added 10 and six markers. Daugherty also hauled in seven rebounds for the victors.
Beaver and Jeremiah Swab were next with four points each, while Cash Burnett completed the tally with two points.
East made 18-of-65 shot attempts for 28 percent, including a 2-of-12 effort from behind the arc for 17 percent. The guests were also 8-of-21 at the charity stripe for 38 percent.
Austin Smith paced the SECS with 10 points, followed by Metzler with nine points and Bryson Ramirez with seven markers. Levi Justice was next with six points, while Andrew Pyles and Landhen Pernell chipped in five points each.
Austin Baughman and Chase Coyle completed the scoring with two points apiece. Pernell led the Tartans with eight caroms.
OVCS returns to action Friday when it hosts Parkersburg Christian in a barsity girls-boys doubleheader that begins at 6 p.m.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.