BEAVER, Ohio — The third time was a charm … for the Eastern Eagles that is.
After going winless against its Meigs County rivals in the regular season, the Southern boys basketball team didn’t fare much better against host Pike Eastern on Tuesday night during a 75-60 setback in a Division IV Southeast 1 sectional semifinal in Pike County.
The 17th seeded Tornadoes (7-16) kept pace for the better part of three periods of play, but the guests ultimately had their season come to an end as the 16th seeded Eagles made a 25-15 fourth quarter push that turned a 2-possession game into a comfortable 15-point outcome.
Aiden Hill poured in six points in the opening frame as SHS found themselves down 16-15 through eight minutes, but EHS countered eight points by Lincoln Rose by going on a 19-12 surge that extended the lead out to 35-27.
Cade Anderson scored seven points and propelled Southern to an 18-16 third period push that closed the gap down to 51-45 headed into the finale.
The Eagles hit four trifectas and had four different players score at least five points down the stretch, allowing for that 10-point swing to close out regulation.
SHS made 26 total field goals — including five 3-pointers — and also went 3-of-4 at the free throw line for 75 percent.
Rose paced the guests with 18 points, but was held scoreless in the fourth stanza. Cruz Brinager followed with 16 points, while Anderson and Hill respectively added 13 and 10 markers.
Andrew Riffle and Brayden Otto completed the scoring with two points and one point.
Pike Eastern made a dozen trifectas and 28 total field goals while also sinking 8-of-14 charity tosses for 57 percent.
Neil Leist led the Eagles with a game-high 19 points, followed by Boennan Slusher with 18 points and Isaac Richardson with 14 markers. Lance Barnett and Jace White also chipped in 12 and 11 points, respectively.
Eastern advances to the sectional final and will travel to top seeded Trimble for a tipoff at 7 p.m. Friday night.
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Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.