BELPRE - Senior Nick Therriault followed a 36-point night Wednesday with a 30-point performance Thursday night as Belpre outscored visiting Miller 44-39 in the second half to nip the Falcons 72-70 in a TVC Hocking Division boys basketball game.
The win improved the Golden Eagles' record to 10-11 overall and 9-6 in the TVC Hocking heading into their final regular-season contest at Waterford at 7:30 tonight. The loss dropped Miller to 5-15 overall.
Although playing its third game in as many nights Thursday, Belpre led 12-7 midway through the first quarter before Hunter Starlin and Garrett Sinifit brought Miller back into a 17-all tie after the initial eight minutes of action.
The second stanza saw the Falcons grab a 20-19 lead and hold onto it throughout the period despite Golden Eagle comeback efforts led by Therriault and Brennen Ferrell to hold a 32-28 advantage at the half.
Belpre, though, in the third quarter started strong with a Ferrell rebound bucket followed by treys by Sam Petty and Logan Plummer to surge ahead 36-34. Then the lead changed hands eight times before Belpre's Tavian Miller and Starlin exchanged three-point plays in the last 15 seconds to leave the hosts up by just a point, 50-49, going to the fourth quarter.
And try as Miller might, the Falcons stayed behind by from one to five points for the initial 6 1/2 minutes of the fourth as primarily Therriault, but aided by Petty, rode to the rescue time after time to keep the Falcons at bay. That is until Austin Knippa canned a 3-ball with 1:05 remaining to slice the deficit to one, 71-70, for Miller.
The Falcons then held for the last shot, but Belpre fouled with 23.2 seconds to go. Both foul shots were missed and Miller was forced to foul at 15.3 seconds with Scott Carpenter sinking the second of two free throws for a two-point edge.
Miller proceded to call timeouts at 12.4 and 5.3 seconds, but dogged by tight Belpre defensive pressure ended up throwing up a 3-point try at the buzzer that was short of the basket.
After Therriault in the Belpre scoring column were Petty with 12 points, Ferrell with nine, and six each from Plummer and Tavian Miller.
Miller was led in point-production by Starlin with 23, followed by Elijah Rader with 14 and Sinift with 10.
Waterford 68, Southern 34
POMEROY, Ohio - Waterford took all the drama out of its Division IV sectional final with Southern rather quickly and moved on with a 68-34 victory.Waterford took a 25-7 advantage at the end of the first quarter then increased the gap to 40-12 by halftime.
Dani Drayer led the Wildcats (14-7) with 26 points, while Regan Porter added 10 points.
Celestia Hendrix led Southern (14-8) with 18 points.