By Josh Brown
XENIA — Entering Friday night’s play, four teams were tied atop the Metro Buckeye Conference standings, with the Troy Christian boys basketball team set to play two of them head to head in a three-game span.
Two down, one to go.
After knocking the Yellow Springs Bulldogs out of the MBC lead Friday night, the Eagles knocked the short-handed but state-ranked Legacy Christian Knights out of the lead, as well, building a 20-point halftime advantage and putting away a 57-42 victory Tuesday night on the road, leaving Troy Christian only tied with Dayton Christian in the league’s standings.
Connor Case hit a halftime buzzer-beating 3 to cap off a big second quarter for the Eagles (10-2, 5-1 MBC), where they outscored the Knights (9-3, 4-2 MBC) 24-9 to take a 36-16 halftime lead.
“It was a great first half of basketball for us,” Troy Christian coach Ray Zawadzki said. “After that, we also scored the first eight points of the second half. We got stuck in a lull after that, but we were able to finish off the game.”
James Anderson led the Eagles with 20 points and eight rebounds, Cameron Strine scored 16 points and had five assists and Jackson Kremer had seven points, seven rebounds and five blocked shots.
Legacy Christian played with its two leading scorers, Erik Uszynski and Keano Hammerstrom, with Ashton Burke leading the team Tuesday with 15 points.
“I’m proud of the kids. We were able to play with a distinct purpose defensively tonight,” Zawadzki said. “This was one of our best games as a group. As we continue to improve offensively, we can only get better.”
The Knights were ranked No. 9 in the Ohio Division IV poll, with Tuesday’s win being the Eagles’ first over a state-ranked team since 2014. The win also leaves the Eagles tied with Dayton Christian for the MBC lead, with both teams sitting at 5-1.
Troy Christian will get its shot at the final MBC co-leader at Jan. 26 at home.
The Eagles play Middletown Christian Friday and travel to Miami East on Saturday.
TC North 55
LEWISBURG — Defending Cross County Conference champion Bethel got a test Tuesday night at Tri-County North, but the Bees built enough of an early lead to put away a 64-55 victory to improve to 10-2 on the season.
More importantly, though, the Bees are now 6-0 in the CCC, the only team without a loss in league play. Tri-County North fell to 6-4 on the season and 2-2 with the loss, leaving Franklin Monroe and Mississinawa Valley in second place with one loss apiece — losses at Bethel’s hands.
“They’re one of the better teams in the league,” Bethel coach Brett Kopp said. “We wanted to be able to go inside more often, and when we were able to do that, we had a lot of success. We’ll take the league win, for sure.”
Kendal James had 21 points and three assists and Ryan Rose had 20 points and four assists to lead the Bees. Alex Van Haaren added 11 points, 15 rebounds and seven blocked shots and Jacob Evans had six points, six rebounds and three assists.
Bethel travels to National Trail Friday.
BRADFORD — Newton had three players break the 20-point mark Tuesday night as the Indians picked up their first Cross County Conference win of the season, defeating Bradford 84-67 on the road.
Chet Jamison led the Indians (3-8, 1-4 CCC) with 24 points, while Treg Jackson hit five of Newton’s 10 3-pointers on the night and scored 23 points and Ryan Mollette added 21 points.
Dialaquan Millhouse led the Railroaders (1-10, 0-6 CCC) with a game-high 31 points, hitting four of Bradford’s nine 3s in the game, while Andy Branson added 13 points.
SPRINGBORO — Tippecanoe’s two-game winning streak came to an end Tuesday night as Springboro built a 10-point lead by halftime and held off a second-half rally to knock off the Red Devils 75-68.
Caiden Smith led Tippecanoe (6-4) with 16 points, Cade Gingerich had 13 points and Josh Wildermuth and Noah Bledsoe each scored nine.
The Red Devils host Fairborn Friday then travel to Milton-Union Saturday.
NEW LEBANON — Milton-Union struggled in the first half Tuesday night, falling behind 25-12 at the break and never recovering in a 53-45 loss at Dixie in Southwestern Buckeye League Buckeye Division play.
Caleb Wintrow hit three 3s and finished with 16 points and six rebounds off the bench to lead the Bulldogs (2-9, 0-5 SWBL Buckeye), while Daniel Albaugh had 13 points, seven rebounds and four steals.
Milton-Union travels to Waynesville Friday then hosts Tippecanoe Saturday.
National Trail 69,
NEW PARIS — Covington stayed within six points of National Trail after one quarter, but the Blazers built an 18-point halftime lead and shut the Buccaneers down from there to claim a 69-39 win Tuesday night in Cross County Conference play.
Braden Miller was the only Covington player in double figures with 10 points, Andrew Cates added seven and Kleyton Maschino scored six. National Trail, meanwhile, had four players in double figures, led by Cameron Harrison’s 15.
Covington (3-8, 2-4 CCC) hosts Miami East Friday.
Other scores: Piqua (5-6, 2-4 GWOC American North) 76, West Carrollton 62.
TROY — The Troy bowling teams had an easy time hosting Trotwood Tuesday in Greater Western Ohio Conference American League crossover play at Troy Bowl, with the girls winning 2,430-1,182 and the boys winning 2,279-1,567.
For Troy’s girls (5-1, 5-0 GWOC American North), A’leigha Smith led the way by rolling 216-245—461, Jenna Stone rolled 219-195—414, Stephanie Crider rolled 167-224—391, Alyssa Shilt rolled 203-186—389, Cassidy McMullen rolled 246 and Sierra Brown rolled 151.
For the Trojan boys (6-0, 5-0 GWOC American North), Aaron Stone rolled 224-192—416, Preston Jackson rolled 167-246—413, Jordan Fisher rolled 226-173—399, Carson Rogers rolled a 223 game, Brayden Ganger added a 213, Brian Joins a 157 and Logan Jones a 149.
Troy hosts Greenville Thursday.
* Girls Basketball
SIDNEY — The Bradford girls basketball team improved to 6-6 on the season Tuesday, reaching the .500 mark with a 50-37 victory at Fairlawn.
Skipp Miller led the Railroaders with 18 points, eight rebounds and six steals, with Bianca Keener added 13 points and Emma Canan and Chelsea Gill both chipping in eight.
Bradford hosts Arcanum Thursday.
Contact Josh Brown at (937) 552-2132, or follow @TroyDailySports on Twitter.