TROY – Tri-Village took care of business in the second round of the Ohio High School Athletic Association Division IV sectional boys basketball tournament at Troy with a 68-53 win over Miami Valley.
The Patriots advanced to the sectional title game and will play at 7 p.m. Friday at Troy High School with a matchup with Emmanuel Christian, who upset Franklin Monroe in the nightcap.
Tri-Village used great patience, running its offense and finding good shots to build a 9-2 lead … but Miami Valley came back to get it to 9-8 at the 2:40 mark.
TV got a couple of buckets going to the rim to close out the quarter leading 14-10.
Christian Ricker had 4 points, Gage Hileman and Jared Buckley each had 3 points, and Noah Burns and Derek Eyer both had 2 points in the opening frame.
Miami Valley countered early in the second period with Mark Williams, a 6-foot 5-inch guard who was very long and athletic, scoring on an and-one to get the Rams to within a point, 16-15, at 6:32.
The Patriot then got hot, and it started on a triple from senior Trey Frech. Then a couple of nice interior feeds to Ricker and Buckley collapsed the defense so Frech countered again with two more triples from the corner, and the Patriots led 29-15, causing the Rams to take a timeout at 3:22.
Miami Valley battled back, scoring the next 5 points and holding the Patriots scoreless, and only trailed by 9 at the half, 29-20.
Frech didn’t let the halftime break cool him off as he dropped two more long ones in the third quarter and Derek Eyer scored 4 at the rim as the Patriots expanded their lead to 45-30 at the end of the third quarter.
The fourth quarter was the Williams show as the senior scored 14 of his game-high 33 points in the frame including shooting 15-for-15 from the free throw line, doing everything he could to try and get the Rams into the game.
“I knew he was going to be a problem, and I told our guys he was a 6-5 guard, and he was every bit of 6-5 with those long arms,” Tri-Village boys basketball coach Mackenzie Perry said. “He made it very difficult for us. He’s a great player, and hopefully he gets a look at the next level because he is definitely good enough.”
Tri-Village matched the Rams 23 points in the final stanza with Buckley scoring 10 and Burns 6 points to win it going away, 68-53.
“It feels really good,” Perry said after the game. “I just wanted it for them more than anything else, and I’m excited for them.”
Perry was pleased with the patience his team displayed, and when they worked the offense good things happened.
“Our all-conference performers stepped up tonight (Buckley and Frech). They made shots and also trusted their teammates,” Perry said. “When they were open they knocked it down. When there was a layup available, they finished. It was beautiful to watch.”
Tri-Village showed good balance on the offensive side with Buckley scoring 19 points and Frech 17. Hileman, Burns, Ricker and Eyer all had 8 points each in the win.
The Patriots improved to 10-12 on the year and more importantly find themselves in a familiar role with another opportunity to bring home a sectional title on Friday.
Score by quarters
MV… 10 … 10 … 10 … 23 – 53
TV … 14 … 15 … 16 … 23 – 68
Miami Valley – Alec Martin – 6, Kaelan Patel – 2, Payton Haak – 6, Armean Cheema – 2, Mark Williams – 33, Pruthvi Choudary – 6; Totals 4-13-15/15 – 53
Tri-Village – Gage Hileman – 8, Noah Burns – 8, Derek Eyer – 8, Trey Frech – 17, Jared Buckley – 19, Christian Ricker – 8; Totals 6-18-12/19 – 68