Talk about finishing with a flourish.
The Big Walnut boys basketball team, down just a handful of points early in the fourth quarter, closed the game on an 18-0 run to shock host Newark Catholic 53-40 in the First Federal Savings Holiday Tournament championship game Saturday in Newark.
The win was the Golden Eagles’ (4-4) third straight, all of which came down to fourth-quarter heroics. They were tied with Newark Catholic (7-2) 35-all at the end of the fourth quarter and trailed 40-35 in the period’s early going before their late eruption.
Michael Buckles sparked the spree, scoring seven of his team-leading 15 points in the fourth quarter. Logan Boyd was also steady, finishing with 12 points in the win, while Matt Tarney closed with nine and Zac Asher eight.
TRI-VALLEY 48, ORANGE 32
The Pioneers found points hard to come by Saturday in Lewis Center, falling to visiting Tri-Valley 48-32.
Orange managed just six points in the first quarter, but trailed by just three, 9-6. After scoring eight points in the second quarter and three in the third, though, the game was out of hand as the visitors led 34-17 heading into the final eight minutes of action — a period the Pioneers won 15-14 to smooth out the scoring summary.
Jay Joseph led Orange (0-5) with 13 points in the setback.
CORAL GABLES (Fla.) 63, LIBERTY 53
The Patriots worked their way to a slim halftime lead, but had trouble slowing down Coral Gables in the second half as they lost their second straight KSA Holiday tournament game, 63-53, Saturday afternoon.
Liberty (4-3) led 13-10 after the first quarter and 25-23 at the break, but was outscored 18-13 in the third quarter and 22-15 in the fourth to account for the final margin.
Mike DeLeon, who broke the Patriots’ scoring record twice last week, netting 33 and 35 in back-to-back games, finished with a game-best 17 points in the setback.