• 32°

Dragons ‘run away’ from Piketon, 74-42

Fairland Dragons’ Isaiah Howell (0) twists and turns as he gets off a shot in front of Piketon Red Streaks’ defender Travis Veach (2) during Sunday’s Division III district semifinal game. Fairland routed the Red Streaks 74-42. (Kent Sanborn of Southern Ohio Sports Photos)

Jim Walker
jim.walker@irontontribune.com

ATHENS — Running seems to help the Fairland Dragons get a lot of good runs.
Fairland used its transition game and solid shooting to put together several sustained runs that fueled a 74-42 rout of the Piketon Red Streaks in the Division III district semifinals at Ohio University on Sunday.
Using runs of 14 and 18, Fairland blew the game open and advanced to Saturday’s district finals against South Point at 6 p.m. Saturday at the Convo.
“You want to be as consistent as possible but in any game you’re going to make runs. Hopefully you wind up with more runs than not. But offensively we moved the ball pretty well. When we’re sharing the ball everyone is involved we make more of those runs,” said Fairland coach Nathan Speed.
Luke Thomas knocked down five 3-pointers and scored 21 points to lead the Dragons (22-1). Kollin Van Horn had 19 points, 11 rebounds and nine blocked shots while Gunner Short added 15 points.
“We just shot and moved the ball, and whoever gets the open shot takes it. Everybody played well and shared the ball. If we can do that, I think we can go far,” said Thomas.
“I was just trying to have fun. It’s a great atmosphere. The Convo is a great place to play. You can’t take anyone lightly.”
Casey Moore scored 17 points for Piketon (13-12), including his 1000th career point when he made a foul shot at the fourth quarter.
The game started with four lead changes, but the final a layup by Keedrick Cunningham at the 5:19 mark that put Fairland up for good at 6-5.
The basket sent the Dragons on a 14-0 run as they took an 18-5 first quarter lead. Piketon finally scored on a 3-pointer by Tanner Veach with 28 seconds on the clock.
Short had a steal and dunk to start the second quarter, and the Dragons didn’t slow down until foul trouble surfaced.
Piketon was able to convert 6-of-8 from the foul line in the second quarter to keep from falling too far behind.
Fairland held its biggest lead of the quarter at 28-13 after a put-back by Short at the 2:14 mark.
Piketon was within 29-18 after a follow up shot by Brice Odel only to have Thomas answer with a long 3-pointer from beyond the top of the key and it was 32-18 at the half.
Fairland was on its way to settling the outcome by scoring 18 unanswered points to begin the third quarter that was capped by a pair of 3-pointers by Thomas, and it was 50-18 at the 3:32 mark.
“I was pleased, especially defensively. I thought we stuck to the game plan defensively and did what we needed to do and offensively, too,” said Speed.
“We ran the floor and did some t

Fairland led 54-27 at the end of the third quarter and led by as much as 67-33 on a layup by Thomas with 4:28 to play.
Piketon was just 10-of-53 from the field, but did make 19-of-23 free throws.
Piketon    8    10    9    15    =    42
Fairland    18    14    22    20    =    74
PIKETON (13-1): Travis Veach 2 0 5-7 9, Steven Zimmerman 0 0 0-0 0, Casey Moore 2 1 10-10 17, Scott Lightle 0 0 0-0 0, Blake Reader 0 0 1-2 1, Tanner Veach 0 1 3-4 6, Colton Greene 1 0 0-0 2, Alex Blanton 0 0 0-0 0, Brice Odel 2 1 0-0 7, Baden Fuller 0 0 0 0, Preston Thacker 0 0 0-0 0, Chase Newton 0 0 0-0 0, Jon Hurt 0 0 0-0 0, Corey Thacker 0 0 0-0 0, Zach Clinger 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 10-53 19-23 42. 3-point goals: 3-19. Rebounds: 17-O, 22-D = 39 (Reader 5, Tr. Veach 5). Team/deadball rebounds: 8. Assists: 2. Steals: 4. Turnovers: 20. Fouls: 15. Fouled out: None.
FAIRLAND (21-1): Ty Staten 1 0 2-2 4, Luke Thomas 3 5 0-0 21, Isaiah Howell 2 0 2-2 6, Kollin Van Horn 8 0 3-5 19, Gunner Short 5 1 2-2 15, Keedrick Cunningham 2 0 2-2 6, Joel Lambiotte 0 0 0-0 0, Matt Mondlak 0 0 0-0 0, Dairus Stapleton 0 0 1-2 1, Chase Fisher 1 0 0-1 2, Austin Gartin 0 0 0-1 0, Ian Chinn 0 0 0-0 0, Andy Lange 0 0 0-0 0, Reilly Sowards 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 28-66 12-17 74. 3-point goals: 6-26. Rebounds: 16-O, 27-D = 43 (Van Horn 11, Thomas 6). Team/deadball rebounds: 3. Assists: 12 (Short 3, Howell 3, Staten 3). Steals: 14 (Thomas 4, Howell 4, Short 3, Cunningham 3). Turnovers: 12. Fouls: 19. Fouled out: None.hings in transition. We took advantage of transition points and didn’t turn the ball over.”