CHILLICOTHE — The Washington Blue Lions traveled down US 35 to Ross County to take on the Chillicothe Cavaliers in an SCOL game Friday evening.
The Blue Lions returned home on a very foggy night with a 46-39 victory.
Washington improves to 2-2 on the year, 1-1 in the SCOL.
Chillicothe is now 1-2 overall, 1-1 in the SCOL.
Senior Max Knisley was the game’s leading scorer for the Blue Lions with 21 points.
Knisley was 7 of 9 from the free throw line, including 7 of 8 down the stretch as Chillicothe, trailing, was forced to foul.
Senior Cameron Eckles scored 11 points and junior Jarett Patton was next with seven points.
Chillicothe made 14 field goals out of 53 attempts for just 26 percent.
The Cavaliers had a trio of players each with nine points: sophomore Seth Barnes, senior Nate Rosenbauer and junior Jordan Johnson.
Chillicothe had the start they surely wanted, taking a 16-10 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Washington took one point off that margin by halftime, trailing 27-22.
Senior C.J. Taylor hit a bucket to tie the game, 29-29 with 2:20 to play in the third quarter.
The Blue Lions held a 32-31 lead at the end of the third quarter.
The lead changed hands four times as the fourth quarter unfolded.
Washington took the lead for good on a bucket from Knisley with 4:49 to play in the game.
After making nearly half of their shots during the first quarter, the Cavaliers cooled off severely, going 3 of 14 in the second quarter, 2 of 11 in the third and 2 of 17 in the fourth quarter from the floor.
With the Blue Lions leading by just two points, Rosenbauer attempted a shot in the lane that was blocked by Knisley.
Chillicothe would not score again, while Knisley made 5 of his final 6 free throw attempts in the final 35 seconds to secure the victory.
“It was a tough game to watch, at times,” Washington head coach Shannon Bartruff said. “Because we turned the ball over a lot.” Washington unofficially had 17 turnovers to 11 for the Cavaliers.
“They were killing us on the glass,” Bartruff said. “We weren’t executing on offense. I felt like every loose ball went Chillicothe’s way.
“We won an ugly basketball game,” Bartruff said. “You have to win those games sometimes. Fortunately, Max made enough plays coming down the stretch. He had a big block on Rosenbauer and he knocked down his free throws at the end of the game.
“Having a senior step up and make a play like that, it was huge for Max and it was huge for our team,” Bartruff said of Knisley’s blocked shot. “Rosenbauer is a great player and I was concerned about an ‘and-one’ (a made bucket and foul for a chance at a three-point play). But, Max made a great play.”
Washington will be back in action at home Tuesday when they host East Clinton with the j-v game starting at 6 p.m.
Blue Lion j-v team beats Cavaliers
The Washington Blue Lion j-v team improved to 3-0 overall (2-0 in the SCOL) with a 42-35 victory over Chillicothe.
Dillon Steward was the game’s leading scorer for Washington with 11 points.
Evan Upthegrove scored 9, Richard Burns Jr., 7, Blaise Tayese, 6; Jordan Behm, 4; Elijah Ruth and Jacob Barton, 2 points each and Austin Bailey, 1.
Tanner Easter led the Cavaliers with 10 points. Tre’ Brown was next with 8 points and Khaleel Danzy had 5 points.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
W 10 12 10 14 — 46
C 16 11 4 8 — 39
WASHINGTON — Max Knisley 4 (2)-7-21; Jarett Patton 3-1-7; Kory Proby 1-0-2; C.J. Taylor 1-0-2; Kenny Upthegrove 0 (1)-0-3; Griffin Shaw 0-0-0; Cameron Eckles 5-1-11; Brian Wilson 0-0-0. TOTALS — 14 (3)-9-46. Free throw shooting: 9 of 12 for 75 percent. Field goal shooting: 17 of 34 for 50 percent. Turnovers: 17.
CHILLICOTHE — Seth Barnes 2 (1)-2-9; Brandon Maughmer 1-0-2; William Rodrick 0-0-0; Nate Rosenbauer 2-5-9; Simon Rodrick 1-0-2; Kristian Boltenhouse 3-0-6; Jordan Johnson 0 (3)-0-9; Matthew Benson 1-0-2; Hunter Coffland 0-0-0. TOTALS — 10 (4)-7-39. Free throw shooting: 7 of 8 for 88 percent. Field goal shooting: 14 of 53 for 26 percent. Turnovers: 11.
Reach Chris Hoppes at 740-335-3611, ext. 1104, or on Twitter @choppes1