Women now 7-0
by Todd Robinson,
Loveland, Ohio – In a rare Loveland basketball varsity doubleheader, the squads for both the women’s and men’s teams took on neighboring rival Kings at Tiger Court on Friday night. In front of an energetic and spirited near-capacity crowd, the Tiger roundballers didn’t disappoint. Both teams delighted a raucous Tiger Nation with exciting victories. The atmosphere with Loveland’s friendly rival was electric, as the floor-to-ceiling Tiger student section sported their ugly Christmas sweaters, the Kings student section was large and loud, the Tiger Pep Band was rocking, Tiger alumni were out in force, and the State Championship women’s soccer team was inducted into the Loveland Tiger Hall of Fame at halftime of the men’s game.
State Championship women’s soccer team was inducted into the Loveland Tiger Hall of Fame at halftime of the men’s game.
In the opening game, Loveland’s Coach Parker has the undefeated women playing an exciting full court game. Rotating his squad through 32 minutes of relentless defensive pressure, the Tigers wore down the Knights en route to a 50-36 victory. After taking a 26-18 lead to the halftime locker room, the Tigers sported a 15-5 third quarter run to fuel their win against a scrappy Kings team. The Loveland victory avenged a 2017 series sweep by the Knights. Tiger Kate Garry was honored as the NovaCare Player of the Game. The Lady Tigers remain undefeated at 7-0 (5-0 ECC) and travel to St. Ursula on Tuesday evening.
In the second half of the twin bill, the Tigers men’s team extended their winning streak over the Knights to three games over two years with a hard fought 52-44 victory. With two starters out with injuries, the Tigers got off to a rocky start. Loveland started with 5 consecutive turnovers and didn’t get their first shot up until over three minutes into the game. Kings leveraged 7 total first quarter Tiger turnovers to jump out to an 11-5 lead after the opening stanza.
Three consecutive treys to start the second quarter, the first by Alec Soth, and the next two by Matt Toigo energized the Tigers and the crowd. The Tigers outscored the Knights 23-9 in the second quarter, giving Loveland a 28-20 halftime lead.
After senior Brady McCluskey opened the third quarter with a three and extended the Tiger lead to 11, the Knights fought their way back into the game. Despite junior Gabe Rubio’s six straight points in the middle of the quarter, the Knights closed their deficit to two points, 39-37, at the end of three quarters.
A Knight trey to open the fourth quarter gave Kings a 40-39 lead, their first since the second quarter, but a Toigo field goal put the Tigers back on top, a lead they would not relinquish the rest of the way. However, the Knights made it interesting down the stretch. A Knights bucket with 52 seconds left cut the Tiger lead to 46-44. With fouls to give, Kings fouled on three consecutive plays. On the fourth out of bounds play, the Tigers called a quick time out under frantic Knights defensive pressure as both sides scrambled for the basketball. Coming out of the timeout, Kings fouled Alec Soth. Now in the bonus, Soth calmly knocked down two free throws. A Tiger steal lead to two McCluskey free throws. And two more free throws with 7 seconds remaining closed out the game for the Tigers, with the final score 52-44.
The Tigers were led by senior Brady McCluskey with 17 points. Sophomore Alec Soth kicked in 10 points and 6 rebounds. Matt Toigo scored 10 points. Brady McCluskey was awarded the NovaCare Player of the Game.
The Men improved their record to 3-2 (2-1 ECC) and host Little Miami on Tuesday evening.
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MENS Basketball – Game Statistics
|Friday, December 15, 2017|