The Greenon men’s basketball team entered this past week with a chance the Knights hadn’t had in a long time, a chance to move into second place in the Mad River Division of the Central Buckeye Conference. Greenon hasn’t finished above fourth in the division in almost a decade, so a high finish this season would be a huge step for the program.
The Knights, who entered the week at (4-7) overall and (2-2) in division play. Greenon traveled to Benjamin Logan on Wednesday and then hosted Indian Lake on Friday. Wins over both teams would boost the Knights into a second place tie with the Lakers.
The Knights exploded in the first quarter against Benjamin Logan, as they took a commanding 19-8 lead at the end of the first quarter. It was just the sort of early burst that has been alluding the Knights for the majority of the season so far. The team continued the hot play in the second quarter, as the Knights went into halftime with a 35-21 lead. The second half was all about preserving the lead and using as much of the clock as possible. The Raiders mounted a furious comeback in the fourth quarter, scoring 22 points to make Greenon sweat. But, the Knights executed extremely well to prevail 65-57.
Junior big man Aiden Stockton dominated in the paint, scoring 15 points, grabbing 11 rebounds and blocking four shots. Fellow junior Jacob Whetsel also was a force inside, adding 10 points and nine rebounds. Senior Jacob Riegel scored 14 points, pulled down six boards, dished three assists and snagged two steals.
Junior Chase Green also had a great all-around game, with 14 points, five assists, four steals and two rebounds. Junior Tyler Restau had 12 points, six rebounds, three steals and two assists.
Against Indian Lake the Knights again utilized fast starts in both the first and third quarter to win one of the biggest games they’ve played in a long time. The Knights got off to a 16-11 lead in the first quarter, before falling behind 27-24 at halftime. But, Greenon exploded out of the gate in the third quarter, scoring a whopping 26 points to take a 50-39 lead into the fourth quarter. The Knights again took care of their business in the closing minutes of the contest, holding on for a 61-57 win.
Greenon only has one game in the coming week, a trip to Graham on Friday, January 31 to take on the Falcons. The Knights previously defeated Graham 42-40. The Falcons enter the contest at (1-11) overall and (1-5) in the division.