How big was the Pirates boys games against Kalida? Well the 50/50 draw was over $300 and there was a chance for the first four way boys basketball championship tie for the Putnam County League. The Pirates nor I were winners last night so the Wildcats of Kalida alone take home the Putnam County Boys Basketball Championship title. The Pirates and Wildcats played even for three of the four quarters but the Wildats 5 point advantage in the third was the game changer.
The game started with both teams hitting their shots. The Pirates won the tip and Gabe Williams scored the opening bucket. The Wildcats and Pirates traded points and the game was tied 13-13 at the end of one. The second quarter was a defensive struggle. The Pirates Joey Swager scored the first basket of the quarter for a Pirate 15-13 lead only to be countered by a pair of Wildcats baskets. That was it for the second quarter as the Wildcats went to the locker room ahead 17-15. (note only two free throws were taken in the first half by both teams).
The Pirates scored the first basket in the second half and followed a Kalida basket countered by a Pirate Wade Stauffer 3 pointer for a 20-19 Pirate lead early in the third. The Wildcats would finish off the quarter by scoring 9 while holding the Pirates to 1 for a 28-21 Kalida lead after 3. The Wildcats proceeded to score 8 of the next 12 points to take a 36-25 Kalida lead midway through the fourth. A Pirate 3 pointer closed the gap to 8 only to see the Wildcats score the next 4 to take a 12 point lead. The Pirates countered a parade of Wildcat free throws with some 3 point baskets but could only close the gap to 5. Wildcats 48 Pirates 45.
The Wildcats were 2-2 from the line in the first half, 4-4 in the third quarter, and 16-20 in the fourth. Overall 22-26 shooting 85% from the line for the win. The Pirates shot 11-15 from the line for 73%.
Continental was led by Wade Stauffer (2 three point baskets) and Trevor Williamson (2 three points baskets) with 12 points each. Caleb Olds hit 2 three pointers late in the fourth quarter for 6 points. Gabe Williams added 5, Derek Troyer 4, while Gabe Williams and Joey Swager both made a basket for 2 points.
Kalida claims the PCL Championship with a 6-1 record in the league and 12-7 overall. Continental falls to 3-3 in the league and 5-13 overall.
–Mike Jones, Sportswriter