MERCERVILLE, Ohio — The Rebels were one quarter away from perhaps an impressive upset.
Unfortunately for host South Gallia, that one final quarter got away at the worst time.
By being outscored 19-8 in the final period on Saturday night, the Rebels fell 61-55 to the visiting Symmes Valley Vikings —in a non-league boys basketball tilt.
Symmes Valley, coached by former longtime Rebel mentor Donnie Saunders, led 17-15 following the opening quarter —but South Gallia gained a 47-42 advantage entering the final stanza.
The Rebels, which trailed just 30-29 at halftime, reversed course in the third period with an 18-12 outscoring of Symmes Valley.
However, the Vikings’ fourth-quarter comeback bid saw them make 10-of-12 free throws, part of 22-of-26 for the entire game.
South Gallia, conversely, attempted half as many (13) — and only made five.
That offset the Rebels holding a 21-17 advantage in total field goals, including an 8-5 edge in threes.
The Red and Gold got whistled for 21 personal fouls, compared to 10 for the Vikings.
Sam Angelo, in that fourth frame, amounted 5-of-6 free throws, while Jordan Lucas landed 4-of-5.
Both also made a key two-point goal in the quarter — as Payton Hayes hit a clutch three-pointer.
With the loss, South Gallia slipped to 3-15 — and fell victim to a season sweep by the Vikings.
Symmes Valley, now 7-10, rolled the Rebels in the opening bout of the season.
Eli Ellis, on six of South Gallia’s eight treys, amassed a game-high 24 points.
He hit three three-balls in the opening period, and added two more as part of a 10-point third quarter.
Caleb Henry, on three baskets and 2-of-5 free throws, netted eight points —as Curtis Haner hit three field goals, including a three, for seven.
Austin Stapleton and Joey Woodall wound up with two baskets apiece, while Bryce Nolan knocked down the club’s other trifecta.
Josh Henry had 2-of-4 free throws, while Austin Day dropped in a freebie and a field goal for three.
Lucas led the Vikings with 20 points — on six total field goals and 6-of-7 foul shots, including a pair of first-quarter treys.
Angelo added four field goals and 7-of-8 free throws for 16, while Chayden Renfroe — on two buckets and 8-of-9 foul shots — recorded a dozen.
Renfroe scored seven points, including 5-of-6 at the line, in the second stanza.
Jarod Shepard sank four field goals and split a pair of tosses for 10 points.
Angelo and Sheppard had a three-pointer apiece.
The Rebels return to the road, and return to Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division action, tonight (Tuesday, Feb. 6) at Eastern.
Paul Boggs can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106