After a tight first half, Washington slowly pulled away from Clinton-Massie Friday night for a 65-55 South Central Ohio League victory.
The win was the 13th straight for the Blue Lions, who now stand 14-2 overall and 10-1 in the league. Washington trails only unbeaten Wilmington in the standings.
Clinton-Massie, playing its third game in four days, is now 5-9 overall and 3-7 in the league.
“We were fairly sloppy the whole game, offensively and defensively,” Washington coach Shannon Bartruff said. “And that’s my fault. I didn’t have them ready to go.”
On the other side of the gym, CM coach Dustin Eads was happy with the first half effort but not the second half.
“We didn’t move the ball very well in the second half,” Eads said. “We were settling for quick shots. I know three possessions in a row we were one pass and three (point shot).”
Trey Uetrecht had 18 points and 10 rebounds to pace the Falcons. Thomas Myers came off the bench with an impressive 12-point, 7-rebound performance.
“He’s played well a couple games in a row for us,” Eads said of Myers.
Max Knisley, the Blue Lion senior guard, had 19 points, eight assists, four rebounds and two steals.
“He is so unselfish,” Bartruff said of Knisley. “Eight assists? Sounds about right and we missed four or five more. But he doesn’t let that kind of stuff worry him. He just wants to win.”
The Blue Lions led 14-9 in the opening period but a Myers basket in the final seconds tied the game at 14-14 at the break. Washington went back on top 18-14 but Noah Greathouse – 21 in the first meeting between the two schools but just 11 in this one – scored five straight points to put Massie on top 19-18 at the 4:35 mark.
Washington regained the lead and never trailed when Jarett Patton buried a three-pointer to make it 21-19 at 4:31. The Falcons tied the game at 21-21 on a Bailey LeForge basket, assist to Uetrecht.
But the Blue Lions went up 27-24 on a Griffin Shaw three-pointer and Patton extended it to 27-23 with another three at 2:38.
Clinton-Massie charged back to get within 29-28 but Shaw’s long three as time expired at the half game Washington a 32-28 lead.
“Mentally, that (three-pointer) drains you when the other team hits a shot like that,” Eads said. “You have to forget about it but you really can’t sometimes.”
Washington continued to pull away early in the third, outscoring CM 7-2 to start the second half. A Myers steal led to a Greathouse three to get the Falcons within 40-35 but Washington countered with a 10-2 run to close the quarter up 50-37. Knisley punctuated the with a behind-the-back assist to Eckles.
In the fourth, Massie pulled with 56-49 but couldn’t get any closer.
“This is my fifth year coaching (at Washington) and they always give us matchup problems,” Bartruff said of Clinton-Massie.
SCORE BY QUARTER
(55) CLINTON-MASSIE (fg-3fg-ft-tp) Chrownni 1-0-2-4 Greathouse 4-3-0-11 Uetrecht 6-1-5-18 Demler 2-0-0-4 Weiss 0-0-0-0 LeForge 2-0-0-4 Boyd 0-0-0-0 Myers 5-0-2-12 Wolfe 1-0-0-2. TOTALS 21-4-9-55
(65) WASHINGTON (fg-3fg-ft-tp) M. Knisley 7-0-5-19 Proby 0-0-0-0 Taylor 0-0-0-0 Shaw 8-2-0-18 Eckles 7-0-4-18 Patton 3-2-0-8 K. Upthegrove 1-0-0-2 Wilson 0-0-0-0. TOTALS 26-5-9-65
FIELD GOALS: CM 21-45 (Myers 5-9 Uetrecht 6-12); W 26-49 (Shaw 8-10 Eckles 7-10)
3 PT FIELD GOALS: CM 4-14 (Greathouse 3-8); W 4-10 (Shaw 2-3 Patton 2-4)
FREE THROWS: CM 9-10 (Uetrecht 5-6); W 9-17 (M. Knisley 5-7)
REBOUNDS: CM-30 (Uetrecht 10 Myers 7 Demler 5 Greathouse 5); W-22 (Eckles 6 Shaw 5 M. Knisley 4)
ASSISTS: CM-9 (LeForge 3 Wolfe 2 Uetrecht 2); W-15 (M. Knisley 8 Eckles 3 K. Upthegrove 3)
STEALS: CM-9 (Chowning 2); W-11 (Eckles 4 Shaw 3 M. Knisley 2)
BLOCKED SHOTS: CM-4 (Demler 3); W-3 (Shaw 2)
TURNOVERS: CM-19; W-11
Reach Mark Huber at 937-556-5765, or on Twitter @wnjsports