Boys Basketball: Spencerville advances past Wayne Trace

LIMA — The difference between Spencerville and Wayne Trace on Wednesday night in the D-III district semifinals was simple.

The Bearcats had more firepower on both sides of the ball, and without Brooks Laukhuf on the floor, Wayne Trace just couldn’t get enough production from players not named Kyle Stoller to keep up.

Spencerville dominated the Raiders in the first half, building up a 34-20 lead, and that was more than enough to keep the Bearcats in front for the rest of the game, earning them a 62-45 win over Wayne Trace and a trip to the district final game against Ottawa-Glandorf on Saturday night.

Tip-off is set for 6 p.m. back at Lima Senior against the Titans, who made easy work of Liberty-Benton, 57-41 on Wednesday night.

Spencerville’s quick start began on the offensive end where veteran guard Evan Osting scored eight first-quarter points. The 6’2” senior hit his first four shots of the game and was one of three Bearcats to finish in double figures with 10.

“We had a feeling they were going to throw a triangle-and-two defense at us early and I told our guys that if that happens, to make them pay,” Spencerville coach Kevin Sensabaugh said. “Our three other guys (in the starting lineup) are really good. Evan set the tone for us offensively in the first quarter and everyone held their own on defense in the first half.”

Spencerville held Wayne Trace to eight points in the first quarter and 20 in the first half, building up a 14-point lead in the process.

“Our mindset is to always defend, rebound, and get the 50-50 balls,” Sensabaugh said. “I thought we defended well, did ok on the boards, and we left some 50-50 balls out there but we got to some of them. We’re moving in the right path, but I still think our best basketball is ahead of us.”

At the halfway point, Kyle Stoller had 13 of Wayne Trace’s 20 points. In the second half, Stoller kept that pace up, adding 15 points to his total in the third quarter and finishing with a game-high 34 points.

“I thought we did a fairly decent job on him but he just made a bunch of difficult shots,” Sensabaugh said. “He was really good. There’s no doubt about it that he’s a great player and a great kid. I know he didn’t want it to end and he was locked in.”

Despite Stoller’s valiant effort, he could only will Wayne Trace within 12 points one time late in the third quarter.

Owen Sensabaugh led the way for Spencerville, finishing the night with 18 points, including a pair of threes. Carter Sudhoff followed with a 16-point outing, shooting 7 of 11 from the floor.

As a team, the Bearcats hit 20 of its 38 shots for an efficient 52 percent from the floor. Wayne Trace made 16 of 44 field goal attempts for 36 percent shooting.

The Raiders lost the battle on the boards 17-12 but broke even in turnovers with Spencerville at 8-8.

Spencerville’s meeting with Ottawa-Glandorf is its second straight district title matchup with the Titans.

Kevin Sensabaugh said, “It’s a tall task, that’s for sure, but we do have a little bit of experience playing them in the district finals last year, so hopefully that lets our guys relax a little bit. We’re going to have to bring it for 32 minutes because if we don’t, we’re not going to win.”

Spencerville 62, Wayne Trace 45

Score by quarters:

Spencerville 15 19 17 11 — 62

Wayne Trace 8 12 17 8 — 45


Owen Sensabaugh 18, Carter Sudhoff 16, Evan Osting 10, Will Sensabaugh 8, Carder Orr 7, Grady Smith 3, Totals: 20-14-62


Kyle Stoller 34, Tanner Laukhuf 5, Brady Miller 2, Cale Winans 2, Carter Clemens 2, Totals: 16-10-45

Three-point goals: SV — O. Sensabaugh 2, W. Sensabaugh 1, Smith 1; WT — Stoller 1.

Records — Spencerville 20-4; Wayne Trace 18-6

Reach Chris Howell at 567-242-0468 or on Twitter at @Lima_Howell