Geologists are always looking for sources of energy. So are basketball coaches.
And when Lima Central Catholic boys basketball coach Frank Kill saw an up-tick in the Thunderbirds’ energy level early in the second half of their 60-27 win over Spencerville on Saturday night he sensed good things were on the way.
LCC (6-2) led by six points at halftime but was up by 16 after three quarters. The Thunderbirds’ win came 24 hours after a dominating performance in a 66-41 win over previously undefeated Wapakoneta.
“I just thought our tanks were about half full coming off an emotional win last night. Defensively, we were there but we just weren’t making a lot of things happen. We kind of exposed them a little with our energy in the second half,” Kill said.
“I thought we really picked it up there at the end of the third quarter and kind of broke things open,” he said.
After Spencerville cut the lead to four points, 23-19, in the first minute of the third quarter, LCC went on a 9-2 run in which four of its five starters each got a bucket. Then it went on a 10-0 run near the end of the third quarter and early in the fourth quarter to get the lead up to 20 points.
Tre Garner scored 15 points and Dominic Riepenhoff had 10 points for LCC. Dalton Prichard’s 11 points led Spencerville (1-6).
“I thought Tre Garner was kind of a difference maker,” Kill said. “He was a big guy who was active who was also finishing at the rim. When you can get a post guy to be efficient at both ends of the floor it’s a good thing.”
LCC’s defense held Spencerville to 29 percent shooting on field goals (10 of 35) and forced 19 turnovers. The Thunderbirds shot 47 percent on field goals (23 of 49), had only 10 turnovers and owned a 26-23 rebounding edge.
“We go where our defense goes. Tonight we were able to create but we were sluggish in the first half. To play a 32-minute game is tough to do after an emotional win like that,” Kill said. “We’re right where we want to be in the season. We can talk about flipping switches and I think we’re flipping the right switches when we need to.”
LCC will play at Kalida on Wednesday and at Shawnee on Saturday.
Reach Jim Naveau at 567-242-0414.