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Dragons rout Adena in D3 district, 85-49

Jim Walker

jim.walker@irontontribune.com

 

ATHENS — Leading scorer and rebounder Kollin Van Horn was missing in action, but thanks to his teammates he wasn’t missed.

Riddled with foul trouble throughout the game and fouling out with 5:49 to play, Van Horn did not score in Sunday’s Division III district semifinal game at the Ohio University Convocation Center.

But his teammates came to the rescue as four different players scored in double figures as the Dragons routed the Adena Warriors 85-49.

Isaiah Howell had 23 points — 14 in the first half — and grabbed 16 rebounds to lead the Dragons. Gunner Short scored 16 points, Luke Thomas had 13 points, four assists and three steals, and Keedrick Cunningham came off the bench to get 10 points and eight rebounds.

Fairland coach Nathan Speed admitted the idea of playing more of the first half without Van Horn was not only hard to conceive, but taking an 18-point halftime lead was even more unfathomable.

“It was just everything kind of clicked today for us. I thought our bench played great. Isaiah took up a lot of slack rebounding. Keedrick seemed like he had some good rebounds at key moments,” said Speed.

“No, but I wouldn’t have imagined that we were up 18 at the half with Kollin playing limited minutes.”

While the Dragons picked up the slack on offense, they were also getting things done on defense as they shut down the scoring tandem of Jonathan Thomas and Collin Cory for Adena (16-8).

Thomas — averaging 23.6 a game — had 16 points with nine in the first half. Cory scored all 19 of his points in the second half.

“Defensively we knew that (Collin Cory and Jonathan Thomas) would shoot from anywhere, so we definitely had to get a hand up. We face-guarded (Thomas) and even (Cory).

“We started not giving help off (Cory) because we know once those guys got going they could get going hard,” said Speed.

“They’re good at getting to the rim, too, on their exchanges and we really shut down allowing them getting to the paint. That was the big thing for us defensively in the half-court and closing out hard on their shooters, making them put the ball on the floor and running them off the 3-point line.”

Fairland (20-4) took a 7-0 lead to start the game but the lead was 11-6 with 1:24 on the clock. Thomas then had two tip-in baskets with the second at the buzzer and the lead was 15-6.

A layup by Dairus Stapleton off a pass from Short opened up a 23-7 lead. Thomas hit a 3-pointer to make it 25-13 with 3:46 on the clock, but the Dragons went on an 8-2 run to end the half and it was 33-15.

The Dragons scored 12 unanswered points to begin the second half — seven by Short — and it was 45-15.

A steal and 3-pointer by Ty Staten ended the quarter and put Fairland up 54-29 and settled the outcome early.

One key for the Dragons was a dominating 51-30 rebound advantage that led to 21 second-chance points. Fairland also had 10 fastbreak points.

“We focused on attacking the boards and being strong and going and getting the ball,” said Speed.

“Rebounding-wise I felt like we definitely would have the advantage and we needed to take advantage and running the floor in transition. That was the two focuses we had, rebounding and getting out on transition and running.”

Fairland will play Lynchburg-Clay at 6 p.m. on Saturday in the district finals at Ohio University.

Adena 6 9 14 20 = 49

Fairland 15 18 21 31 = 85

ADENA (16-8): Jeff Postage 1 0 2-2 4, Collin Cory 2 4 3-4 19, Jonathan Thomas 4 2 4-7 16, Austin Preston 0 0 2-2 2, Isaac Thomas 0 0 2-2 2, Chris Postage 1 0 1-2 3, Trey Postage 0 1 0-0 3Cody Cottril 0 0 0-0 0, Elliott Ogier 0 0 0-0 0, Zach Fout 0 0 0-0 0, Trent Sims 0 0 0-0 0, Caleb Foglesong 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 14-53 14-19 49. 3-point goals: 7-26. Rebounds: 8-O, 22-D = 30 Thomas 7, Preston 4, C. Postage 4). Team rebounds: 4. Assists: 6 (C. Postage 3, J. Postage 2). Steals: 5 (J. Postage 2). Turnovers: 20. Blocks: 1 (C. Postage). Fouls: 22. Fouled out: Cory (4th 3:09).

FAIRLAND (20-4): Ty Staten 0 2 0-0 6, Isaiah Howell 10 1 0-0 23, Kollin Van Horn 0 0 0-0 0, Luke Thomas 3 1 4-6 13, Gunner Short 6 1 3-4 18, Brandon Porter 1 1 0-0 5, Hunter Ashton 2 0 2-3 6, Keedrick Cunningham 5 0 0-0 10, Dairus Stapleton 1 0 0-0 2, Hayden James 0 0 0-0 0, Joel Lambiotte 1 0 0-0 2, Andy Lange 0 0 0-0 0, Ian Chinn 0 0 0-0 0, Chase Fisher 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 35-71 9-13 85. 3-point goals: 6-19. Rebounds: 16-O, 35-D = 51 (Howell 16, Ashton 8, Cunningham 8). Team rebounds: 2. Assists: 12 (Thomas 4, Short 3, Cunningham 3). Steals: 14 (Howell 4, Staten 3, Short 3). Turnovers: 15. Blocks: 3 (Van Horn 2, Howell 1). Fouls: 21. Fouled out: Van Horn (4th 5:49).