Olentangy Berlin made key play after key play down the stretch, but so did Olentangy, which used a Jack Huskey layup with 30 seconds left to send the game into overtime before outscoring the host Bears 11-2 in the extra session to escape with a 58-49 OCC-Cardinal Division win Friday night in Delaware.
Ethan Smith opened the OT with a triple, Huskey scored after that and another Smith bucket pushed the lead to seven as the Braves scored the first 10 points of overtime to seal the deal.
The game was close from start to finish. Neither team was able to build much of a lead, but Berlin (1-1, 0-1) looked poised to do just that down the stretch as Jason Inbody hit a triple and Mathios Abenet followed with a baseline jumper to bump the Bears’ edge to 43-38 midway through the fourth.
Olentangy never blinked, though. Harrison Ronnebaum and Austin Sizemore each sank a pair of free throws on back-to-back trips to tighten the spread to a single point.
Berlin’s Isiah Brown scored off an offensive rebound to push the lead back to three, Derek Goodman drew a charge to give the Bears the ball back and Jason Harris calmly sank two free throws of his own to make it a 47-42 game with two minutes left.
But, the Braves answered again … as they did all night. Reid Apke hit a corner three and, after Berlin missed the front end of a one-and-one at the other end, Huskey scored to send it to OT.
Huskey closed with a game-best 17 points while Smith had 16. Inbody led Berlin with 12 points while Adrian Stone closed with 11 in the setback.
Delaware Hayes 51, Big Walnut 38
The Pacers continued their hot start to the season, opening league play with a win over the visiting Golden Eagles Friday night in Delaware.
Jake Lowman led Hayes (3-0, 1-0), which closed the game on a 13-0 run, with 19 points while Jesse Burris closed with 14 for the Pacers, who combined to hit 11 of their 12 fourth quarter free throws to cement the win.
Carter Imertreijs led Big Walnut (1-2, 0-1) with 15 points on the strength of five triples.
Dublin Coffman 58, Olentangy Liberty 47
The host Shamrocks started fast, parlaying a 20-8 lead after a quarter into a OCC-Central Division win Friday night in Dublin.
The Patriots cut it to six, 28-22 by halftime, but the Shamrocks made just enough plays down the stretch to hold them off.
Parker Hinkle led Liberty with 12 points while Cooper Davis finished with 11.
Buckeye Valley 67, Mifflin 41
The Barons were sharp in their home opener, rolling to a non-league win over the visiting Punchers Friday night in Delaware.
Dylan Thompson had a team-best 16 points to lead BV, which outscored Mifflin 18-6 in the first quarter and 20-11 in the second to take control. Owen Osborne had 15 in the win while Troy Scowden had a double-double — 14 points and 10 rebounds.
Sophia Midura only had five points, but she made them count as her last-second hoop lifted Delaware Hayes to a thrilling 43-41 win over host Big Walnut in Friday’s league opener in Sunbury.
The Pacers, who used threes from Midura, Chloe Jeffers and Sara Dudley to jump out to an early edge, led 15-4 after one. Big Walnut, thanks in part to a combined four second quarter threes from Teagan Ng and Abbey Coleman, outscored Hayes 19-12 in the second to get back into things and 17-8 in the third to take a late lead, but the Pacers had all the answers down the stretch.
Hayes outscored Big Walnut 8-1 in the fourth to complete the comeback.
Jeffers led the Pacers with 15 points while Dudley finished with 14. Coleman led BW with 16 points while Ng had 11.
CSG 34, Buckeye Valley 24
Kayla Helms and Ella Hazelrigg finished with seven points apiece, but the rest of the team combined for just 10 as host CSG used defense and free-throw shooting to hang on Friday night in Columbus.
Carlie Osborne had six of BV’s other 10 points in the setback.
Also: Dublin Coffman 52, Olentangy Liberty 36; Olentangy 48, Olentangy Berlin 29.