RACINE, Ohio — Offense in abundance.
The Southern and Wahama boys basketball teams both posted season-highs in the scoring column on Friday night in Meigs County, with the host Tornadoes taking a 75-55 victory in Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division play.
The Purple and Gold (8-10, 7-6 TVC Hocking) — snapping a three-game skid — never trailed in the game, starting the night with an 8-0 run over the first 1:34. The hosts forced seven live-ball turnovers in the opening period and hit over 70 percent of their field goal attempts, leading to a 29-8 advantage on the scoreboard.
Wahama (0-17, 0-14) scored 10 of the first 12 points in the second period, cutting its deficit to 31-18 with 5:00 left in the half. Southern, however, answered with a 15-to-2 run and headed into halftime with a 46-20 advantage.
The White Falcons scored seven of the first 10 points in the second half, before a 10-to-5 spurt gave the hosts a 61-32 lead with eight minutes to play.
Southern hit a two-pointer to take its largest lead of the night, at 31 points, 18 seconds into the finale. The Red and White closed the night with a 23-to-12 run, and fell by a 75-55 count.
For the game, SHS shot 29-of-66 (43.9 percent) from the field, including 9-of-25 (36 percent) from deep. Meanwhile, Wahama made 23-of-57 (40.4 percent) field goal attempts, including 7-of-25 (28 percent) three-point tries. Both sides were near-perfect at the foul line, Southern making 6-of-7 (85.7 percent) and WHS sinking 2-of-3 (66.7 percent).
The hosts won the rebounding battle by a 36-to-23 count, including 14-to-4 on the offensive end. SHS committed eight turnovers, half as many as the White Falcons. The Tornadoes combined for 24 assists and 15 steals, while Wahama collected 12 assists, six blocked shots and five steals.
SHS senior Cole Steele led all-scorers with 24 points, hitting a game-best five three-pointers. Trey McNickle, Landen Hill and Arrow Drummer scored 12 points each in the win, with McNickle earning a team-best six assists, Hill grabbing a game-high nine rebounds, and Drummer leading the defense with five steals.
Coltin Parker hit a trio of three-pointers on his way to 11 points for the Purple and Gold, while Chase Bailey and Ryan Laudermilt scored two points apiece.
Abram Pauley led Wahama with 19 points and six assists. Harrison Panko-Shields and Ethan Gray scored nine points apiece in the setback, with Gray hitting a team-best three triples. Ethyn Barnitz claimed six points for the White Falcons, Brayden Davenport added five, while Josiah Lloyd scored three. Brennan Grate and Adam Groves rounded out the WHS tally with two points apiece, with Groves grabbing a team-best eight rebounds.
Leading the guests on defense, Pauley and Davenport had two steals each, while Barnitz blocked three shots.
The Tornadoes sweep the season series with the White Falcons, as they also won 63-29 on Jan. 3 in Mason.
Both teams face road games in the league on Tuesday, with Southern at Miller, and Wahama at Waterford.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.