The Olentangy Berlin boys basketball team put together its best showing of the season — and one of its best stretches in its three-year history to start the third quarter — en route to a lopsided 56-36 non-league win over visiting Mount Vernon Wednesday night in Delaware.
Already up 30-22 at halftime, the Bears (3-0) blew things open with an 18-0 run out of the break.
“I liked our approach to the beginning of the third,” Berlin coach Donovon Barrett said. “I thought our energy was really good and, honestly, I think that was some of the best offense we’ve run in the three years here. We shared the ball, found the open guy, knocked down shots and didn’t settle.
“Our guys are figuring it out. We have a long way to go, but we’re figuring it out.”
Austin Corley started the surge with a quick hoop on the first possession of the third quarter … and the Bears never looked back. Jason Inbody got free on a back-door cut and converted a pass from Aiden Loeffler into a bucket on the next trip down the floor and Derek Goodman, who finished with a game-high 16 points, hit a three from straight on to balloon the Berlin lead to 37-22 with 5:59 left in the third.
Inbody scored again to make it 39-22, this time off a feed from Jason Harris, and a hustle play from Harris on the Bears’ next trip to the offensive end pushed the lead to 20, 42-22, with 4:17 left in the quarter. After Goodman missed a three from the corner, Harris grabbed the offensive board and kicked it back out to Goodman, who slashed toward the rim, converted a driving layin through contact and cashed in on the ensuing free throw.
Two more Inbody hoops and a bucket from Jonathan Harder smoothed out the run.
Mount Vernon’s Blake Meyer scored inside to stop the bleeding, but the damage was done. The Yellow Jackets scored the last seven points of the third, but still trailed big, 48-29, with eight minutes left.
Loeffler hit a three to start the fourth and the Bears cruised to the finish line from there.
As good as the offense was, Barrett said the defense created a lot of it.
“On the defensive side, our intensity and active hands were really good,” he said. “We had good energy, and we have a lot of guys who can bring good energy. I think depth came into play a little tonight and it panned out pretty well for us. With us being a newer program, we talk a lot about what we want our identity to be. We want that defensive side — activity and energy — to be part of our DNA.
“We’re not where we want to be … we have a long way to go, but we like where we’re headed.”
Inbody backed Goodman with 14 points while Corley chipped in 11 in the win.
Meyer led Mount Vernon with nine points while Owynn Gleason and Beau Bridges finished with eight and seven points, respectively.