Boys JV basketball falls to Ottawa Hills 65-56 due to cold offensive second half

Tommy Spaletto

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After coming off a long break since its last game against the Cedar Springs Red Hawks last Thursday, the boys JV basketball team hoped to continue its winning streak coming into Ottawa Hills yesterday. The Rangers, unfortunately, could not get the job done, as they fell into the hands of the Bengals 65-56. Despite the loss, sophomore Peyton Bush continued to provide lockdown defense along with some excellent shooting. Sophomore Chris Battiste also had some great scoring inside, along with getting open looks for his teammates.

The Rangers came out hot offensively to start the game. Sophomore George Hatchett made his Rangerball debut against his former team and scored the game’s first 5 points while fueling the Rangers to an early 12-3 run in the first quarter. Big threes from fellow sophomores Jeremy James and Peyton helped during the big run. Later in the half, Ottawa Hills began to get quick shots and tried to get the Rangers out of their half-court defense. While at times the Bengals were able to get open looks, the Rangers were able to counter that by passing the ball down the floor for many transition baskets. Ottawa Hills went on a big offensive run late in the second quarter, and the two teams went into the locker room all knotted up at 31.

FHC hit a cold stretch to start the second half, and Ottawa Hills took advantage of it. Shots that were going in during the first half suddenly were not going in during the second half, which helped the Bengals to go on a big run and extend the lead. Despite the cold stretch, the Rangers were able to get some baskets inside by giving it to Chris or by trying to get to the free throw line. The Bengals kept making shots, and the Rangers just couldn’t quite keep up with the aggression and the fast pace of Ottawa Hills; FHC eventually fell 65-56.

This loss puts the Rangers at 5-5 on the season and 2-2 in the OK White conference. The team will now shift it’s attention to an enormous game Tuesday against the Forest Hills Northern Huskies. The Rangers swept the season series last year with two thrilling wins, but they will need to be more consistent on offense in order to beat a very hungry FHN team.