By Rob Kiser
and Josh Brown
PIQUA — The Tippecanoe boys basketball team just never stopped battling.
As a result, the Red Devils were able to outlast Piqua in overtime in the opening round of the Red Bracket of the Buckeye Insurance Group Holiday Classic, stunning the Indians 52-47.
Tippecanoe faced Central Buckeye Conference Kenton Trail Division rival Tecumseh in the championship game Wednesday in a game that was not complete at time of press.
“This is a big win for us,” Tippecanoe coach Joel Visser said. “We were 3-4 coming in and We beat a really good team tonight. Hopefully, this will help us turn the corner. We have lost a lot of close games.”
In the extra period, Tippecanoe executed its gameplan to perfection, scoring 13 points and never attempting a field goal.
“That was the plan, with us being in the double bonus,” Visser said. “We were going to attack the middle. We weren’t going to shoot unless we had a layup.”
Tipp made its first 13 free throws in overtime — and finished 13 of 14 from the line in the extra period. Jakob Prall and Nathan Shirley were both 4 for 4 in the extra period from the line, while Aaron Hughes and Joe Tesch were both 2 for 2. By the time Carter Mann went 1 for 2 in the final minute, the outcome had long since been decided.
Mann had 11 of his team-high 14 points in the second half to lead a balanced Tipp attack. Shirley added eight points and Hughes and Tesch both scored seven.
Colton Bachman led all scorers with 20 points for Piqua (5-3), and Brad Hohlbein added 10.
Covington 48, TC 41
PIQUA — Covington (4-4) started hot in the third quarter then held off a Troy Christian rally attempt late, winning the consolation final of the Buckeye Insurance Group Holiday Classic 48-41 Wednesday afternoon at Piqua.
With the score tied 19-19 at halftime, the Buccaneers scored the first 11 points of the third quarter. The Eagles (4-4) cut the lead to within three at 33-30 heading into the fourth, and with the score 42-39 Covington, Hayden Hartman fired off a potentially game-tying 3 late — but it only went halfway down, rattling out to allow Covington to maintain the lead, and the Buccs held on from there.
Jordan Maschino led Covington with 16 points and eight rebounds, while Nathan Blei added 11 points.
Sophomore James Anderson had 14 points and seven rebounds to lead Troy Christian, with Hartman and Seth Wynne adding eight apiece.
Covington lost to Russia (7-2) on the tournament’s opening day, 71-64. Jayce Pond hit five 3s and led the Buccaneers with 20 points, while Jordan Maschino added 19 points.
Troy Christian travels to Bethel Monday.
CJ 63, ME 52
VERSAILLES — It took a returning regional champion to hand Miami East its first loss of the season.
Chaminade Julienne (8-1) — a state final four team in Division III last season — outscored the Vikings 23-10 in the third quarter to take control, holding off Miami East for a 63-52 victory in the opening round of the Versailles Holiday Invitational Tuesday night.
Damien Mackesy led the Vikings (7-1) with 16 points, Logan West added 15 points and 11 rebounds, Brandon Mack hit all three of the Vikings’ 3s on the night and scored 10 points and Ryan Haney added seven points.
Miami East faced Anna, which lost in overtime to Versailles, in the consolation final Wednesday night in a game that was not complete at time of press.
Bethel 66, EC 48
BRANDT — The Bethel Bees snapped their two-game skid Tuesday night, coasting to a 66-48 victory over Emmanuel Christian at home.
“The kids came out and played with some energy,” Bethel coach Brett Kopp said. “We’d lost two in a row, and they weren’t going to let that happen again.”
Caleb South led the Bees (6-2) with 22 points and six assists, Evan Hawthorn had 12 points and nine rebounds and Tyler Terry had nine points and eight rebounds. Christian White added seven points, Jacob Evans scored six and Nate Rimkus and Ian Anderson both had five.
Bethel hosted Edgewood Wednesday night in a game that was not complete at time of press.
Dixie 68, Newton 56
NEW LEBANON — Newton’s Brock Jamison poured in 21 points, but the Indians were outscored 23-6 in the decisive third quarter in a 68-56 loss at Dixie Tuesday night.
Brady McBride and Nelson Clymer each added eight points for Newton, which hosts Xenia Christian Saturday.
Contact Josh Brown at (937) 552-2132, or follow @TroyDailySports on Twitter. Rob Kiser can be reached at (937) 451-3334.