CAMDEN — The Preble Shawnee Arrows boys’ basketball team returned home for the first time in over a week and blew out the Dixie Greyhounds on Friday night, 69-57.
The Arrows (3-1, 3-0 Southwestern Buckeye League) were dominant from the start; an early run set the tone as the Arrows took a comfortable 19-10 lead out of the first quarter. From there, the Greyhounds fought to stay within 10. The game found it’s pace at a 12-to-15-point Shawnee lead for most of the evening.
Arrow head coach Dale Spitler Jr. said he was pleased with the way the team played.
“It went pretty well. Got up there early and got a comfortable lead,” Spitler Jr. said. “It was similar to the Madison game where we got the lead early and just maintained it.”
It was junior forward, Joey Bates, who had the biggest impact on the game.
Bates finished with a double-double. He scored 25 points and added 13 rebounds, and was on fire from the free throw line, finishing 13-for-18.
“He’s one of the best rebounders — definitely the best we’ve got — and probably one of the best in the league,” Spitler Jr. said. “He was huge for us.”
Junior guard, Tyler Worley, played the sixth man role off the bench and produce for Spitler Jr.’s team. Worley finished with five points and eight assists, seven of which came in the first half.
“He did a really nice job of getting everyone involved,” Spitler Jr. said
On having a sixth man, Spitler Jr said, “It’s huge. Because we’ve got a fairly deep team and we try to rotate starters, trying to find match-ups. So, it’s nice having guys on the bench that can bring that instant stuff into the game.”
Senior guard Kevin Ketring was an anchor the entire game for Spitler Jr. He finished with nine points, four assists, and four rebounds.
“Kevin did a great job of managing the game. He hit some shots, got a few rebounds. And closed the game out pretty well,” Spitler Jr. said. “When they went to a full-court at the end of the game, he did a great job of stabilizing the offense.”
Another junior made significant strides for Preble Shawnee. Austin Moore finished with 11 points, five boards, and four big steals.
“He did a great job definitely, “ Spitler Jr. said. “We put him on top of our presses and traps; he did a great job. He brings great defensive energy to the team.”
The Arrows were scheduled to face Carlisle, Tuesday, Dec. 20, at Carlisle after the cancellation of the game last Tuesday, Dec. 13.
“Tuesday night, we’ll be ready to go,” Spitler Jr said. “It’s going to be a hard-fought game. We played in the summer, and it turned into a slugfest. It was intense. It’s going to be a big game.”
The Indians won in overtime over Madison on Friday night. And the two teams were to go into the game looking for the inside edge on the SWBL League title.
“Somebody has to knock Carlisle off at some point, or they’re going to win it,” Spitler Jr. said. “Hopefully, we can be the ones to do it.”