TUPPERS PLAINS, Ohio — Eastern may not have been on the winning side on Tuesday night, but the Eagles still had plenty to celebrate.
With 33 seconds left in the Eastern’s 71-46 loss to Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division guest Waterford, EHS senior Jett Facemyer sank a layup for two points, his 1,000th and 1,001st career points.
“Since my freshman year, I’ve always wanted to be in the 1,000-point club,” said Facemyer, who finished with a game-high 21 points. “I remember when I came in here my freshman year, I looked up, saw the banner and saw that there weren’t very many boys names up there. It really does mean a lot to put another boy up on the wall.
“All of my teammates have helped me reach this, both past and present,” Facemyer added. “I have to thank my coaching staff and teammates for trusting me with the ball.”
Fourth-year Eastern head coach Jeremy Hill recalled a moment from the summer before both he and Facemyer began their first varsity campaigns.
“It was probably about three-and-a-half years ago, Jett was in open gym and we had a long conversation,” said Coach Hill. “I said ‘Jett, if you let me help you, you’ll score 1,000 points by the time it’s done.’ It’s nice to see that it came to fruition tonight.”
Waterford (6-2, 6-0 TVC Hocking) scored the first six points of the game and never trailed, leading 13-8 after eight minutes of play. Eastern (3-6, 3-3) cut the deficit to two points, at 15-13, two minutes into the second quarter, but made only one field goal over the remainder of the half. The Wildcats went into the break with a 20-6 run and a 35-19 lead.
EHS was held scoreless for nearly three minutes to start the second half, as Waterford built its lead to 43-19. EHS scored six straight points, but WHS ended the third with a 12-6 run and a 55-31 lead.
The guests began the finale with a 12-4 run, pushing the advantage to a game-high 32 points. Eastern held WHS without a field goal for the final four minutes, as the hosts ended the game with an 11-4 run. The final basket of the 71-46 EHS setback was Facemyer’s layup with 33 seconds left.
“For about 10 minutes, we executed a game plan,” said Coach Hill. “It was a two-point ball game early in the second quarter. We got away from our game plan and we suffered for it. Take nothing away from Waterford, because they have a very nice ball club, a ball club that’s going to go deep into the tournament and probably win the league. They’re not the no.9 ranked team in the state for nothing.”
For the game, Waterford held a 32-25 advantage in rebounds, including a narrow 8-7 advantage in offensive boards. WHS won the turnover battle by a 17-to-11 margin, while claiming an 18-to-7 assists advantage and a 13-to-7 steals advantage.
Eastern connected on 17-of-46 (37 percent) field goal attempts, including 1-of-4 (25 percent) three-point tries. Meanwhile, the Wildcats were 25-of-49 (51 percent) from the field, including 3-of-11 (27.3 percent) from three-point range. EHS made 11-of-13 (84.6 percent) free throw tries, while Waterford was 18-25 (72 percent) from the stripe.
Jett Facemyer’s 21 points led the Eagles, while Jon Wolfe added nine points. Corbett Catlett and Garrett Barringer each had six points, to go with eight and six rebounds respectively. Sharp Facemyer and Owen Arix both contributed two points to the EHS effort.
Wolfe and Catlett each had two assists to lead EHS, while Catlett and Barringer each picked up two steals. Jett Facemyer recorded the hosts’ lone blocked shot.
Waterford was led by Cody Harris with 17 points, followed by Bryce Hilverding, Isaac Huffman and Tyler McCutcheon with 12 apiece. Jordan Welch and Travis Pottmyer each had six points in the win, Andrew Theiman added four, while Riley Burns scored two points.
Welch led WHS on the glass with eight rebounds, followed by Huffman with six. Hilverding dished out six assists to lead the Wildcats, while Welch added five helpers. Hilverding also paced the WHS defense with five steals, while McCutcheon came up with four steals and Huffman had the team’s lone blocked shot.
These teams are scheduled to meet again on February 10, in Washington County.
Eastern will try to snap its four-game losing skid on Friday, when archrival Southern visits ‘The Nest’. The Wildcats will look to continue their perfect league start on Friday, when Belpre visits WHS.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.