FITHIAN — As the second half started Westville Tigers steps up the pressure defense against the Oakwood Comets and went on a 11-0 run to extend the lead to 19 points over a three and a half minute span to clinch a 57-42 win on Friday.
“I feel that our defense intensity picked up in the second half and that Jeffrey Thompson picked up his aggressive defense and that allowed us to pressure the ball more and extend our lead,” Westville coach Jeff Millis said.
Thompson also led the Tigers on offense, leading three players in double figures (Thompson, Brazas, and Milholland) to pace the Tigers’ attack.
“I thought the third quarter was also the key to the game,” Oakwood coach Doug Robinson said. “I didn’t think the team handle the pressure of Westville very well, and I takes the blame for that ... I need to prepare them better.”
The game started with both teams playing hard and the Tigers taking a 14-13 after the first quarter. The lead would have been bigger but Brian Rice of the Comets hit a 3-pointer with time running out.
“I thought we played well in the first half and did a nice job of handling their pressure,” Robinson said.
As the game entered the second quarter, the Tigers built a 5 point lead. The Comets would fight back to take the lead on baskets from Parker Lee and Skyler Slade 22-21 with three minutes to go in the second quarter, but he Tigers got a late run in the first half to take a 30-23 lead at halftime.
Over the last three minutes of the second quarter and the first four minutes of the 3rd quarter, the Tigers held the Comets scoreless with a tough defense and a smooth running offense to go on a 20 - 0 run that helped decide the game.
“I think we as a team played well on defense and offense at times but I think we have a lot of room to improve and the season is young,” Millis said.
Westville is 2-0 and Oakwood is 2-3 on the young season.
The Tigers will host Villa Grove/Heritage on Tuesday while the Comets will play St. Thomas More on Tuesday.