Huron Tigers’ run comes to an end with regional semifinal loss

BOWLING GREEN — Having won just their third district title in 50 years on March 9, the Huron Tigers came into Wednesday’s Division III Regional Semifinals with aspirations of further extending one of the best seasons in program history.

The Tigers’ (20-6) run came to an end by way of a 62-54 loss to the Bloom-Carroll Bulldogs (26-1) at the Stroh Center, but coach Bobby James insisted Huron walked away with its heads held high.

“We’re disappointed we didn’t win but we’re celebrating the year we had,” James said. “We had a great year. These kids played their tails off again. I think you saw a heck of a ball game out there tonight.”

The Tigers trailed by a game-high 12 points near the five-minute mark of the third quarter before resorting to a full- court press that helped spark an 8-2 run that made the score 55-49 Bloom-Carroll heading into the game’s final minute.

Following a foul by Huron on an inbounds pass, Bulldogs senior A.J. James missed on a one-and-one opportunity, giving Huron the opportunity to make it a one possession game. However, the Tigers missed a combined four shots from the floor before junior Cody Thompson was unable to make good on a pair of free throws.

Though they shot just under 55 percent (12 of 22) from the free-throw line on the evening, Bloom-Carroll made their final six shots from the charity stripe to close out the Tigers.

“We got down 12 but you can see these guys don’t quit,” James said. “I couldn’t be more proud of this group of individuals.”

Huron trailed 27-22 at the start of the second half but burst out the gate on a 9-3 run, capped off by a steal and emphatic one-handed dunk by Thompson, giving the Tigers a 31-30 lead and prompting a Bulldogs timeout.

Bloom-Carroll struck back with aid of a trio of 3-pointers from Joey Schmitz. The Bulldogs went on to score the last six points of the quarter, entering the fourth with a 46-39 advantage.

Schmitz was held to 10 points in the second half but poured in 16 in the second to end with a game-high 26. The junior guard knocked down 9 of 18 shots from the field, including 5 of 10 3-pointers. He was joined in double figures by Eastern Kentucky-bound senior point guard Isaac McGlore who contributed 13 points.

“Those kids can flat out play, as you saw tonight,” James said. “You can’t rest or miss a beat on those two.

“I thought our kids did a good job on those two defensively for most of the game. They really made them work.”

Both teams went scoreless for the opening 1:45 before Huron senior forward Aaron Driftmeyer found twine on a finger roll in the lane.

Schmitz gave the ceremonial home team its first lead at 5-4, sinking a 3-pointer at the top of the key before hitting another to bring the score to 8-4.

A jumper from the left wing by senior forward Aaron Casey stopped Bloom-Carroll’s 6-0 spurt. He scored the last six points of the quarter for the Tigers, who headed into the second quarter deadlocked at 10.

Casey, the only Tiger to reach double figures in the scoring column, finished with a team-best 20 points. Fellow senior Aaron Driftmeyer recorded a game-high 10 rebounds and added eight points.

The squads swapped the lead for most of the second quarter but the Bulldogs created space before halftime with an 8-2 burst.

Bloom-Carroll shot 42 percent (21 of 51) from the floor, including 38 percent (8 of 21) from beyond the arc. Huron countered with a 45 percent (25 of 56) clip from the field, but connected on just 18 percent (3 of 17) from 3-point territory.

“We took them right down to the wire,” James said. “I think we gave them everything they wanted and I couldn’t be more proud of our kids.”

Bloom-Carroll 62, Huron 54

D-III Bowling Green Regional Semifinal

HURON — Ryan Vancauwenburgh 3-0 7, Aaron Driftmeyer 2-1 5, Cody Thompson 4-0 8, Aaron Casey 10-0 20, Colin McCready 4-0 10, Trae Graham 1-0 2, Zach Sauter 1-0 2. TOTALS 25-1 54.

BLOOM-CARROLL — Jordan Bachman 0-3 3, Isaac McGlone 5-1 13, Dalton Vanatta 3-2 8, Joey Schmitz 9-3 26, Brandon Manley 3-3 9, Derek Carson 1-0 3. TOTALS 21-12 62.

3-POINT GOALS — H: Vancauwenburgh; B: McGlone (2), Schmitz (5), Carson.

Score By Quarters

Huron (20-6) 10 12 17 15 — 54

Bloom-Carroll (26-1) 10 17 19 16 — 62

Team Statistics

Field Goals — Huron 25 of 56 (45 percent), Bloom-Carroll 21 of 50 (42 percent).

Free Throws — H 1 of 5 (20 percent), BC 12 of 22 (55 percent).

Rebounds — H 34 (Driftmeyer 10), BC 33 (Manley 7).

Turnovers — H 13, BC 10.


Last Updated: 3/13/2013 11:54:28 PM EST

From the Bleachers

See All