COLUMBUS — David City head coach Cole Carraher knew Lakeview was big, but even he was surprised by the Vikings’ size advantage Saturday night.
“They’ve grown even since last year,” he said. “Walking through the line shaking hands after the game, it didn’t really sink in how big those guys were.”
“I’m bigger than anybody on our team by an inch or two, and those guys make me feel small.”
Those guys are 6-foot-4 Sean Donnelly and 6-foot-8 Luke Rollman, a pair of Lakeview seniors who made an impact as big as their statures in the team’s 57-28 home victory.
Donnelly scored a game-high 21 points and grabbed 12 rebounds and Rollman added nine points and a shot-blocking presence that disrupted the David City offense all game.
“We had to shoot the ball better to be more competitive,” said Carraher, whose tallest player is 6-foot-1. “Our looks inside just weren’t there against those two big guys.”
The Vikings took full advantage of the height disparity from the opening tip.
Donnelly had 13 points in the first half and the attention he drew down low allowed teammates Cadge Janssen and Cody Schaad to knock down a couple of early 3-pointers.
“You saw what he’s capable of tonight,” Lakeview head coach Bryce Roth said of Donnelly, who is averaging close to a double-double this season.
Lakeview led 16-8 after the opening quarter and 29-8 following a 13-0 run to start the second period. Donnelly had seven points, including a traditional three-point play, during the spurt.
Maverick Pilakowski scored six straight Lakeview points as the Vikings went up 35-10 and a Donnelly basket as time expired put the score at 39-16 heading into halftime.
“I thought all of our bigs did a good job,” said Roth.
Pilakowski finished with seven points and Rollman scored four of his nine in the first half while making life difficult for the Scouts inside by blocking or altering a number of shots.
“He’s getting better every day,” Roth said of Rollman. “He’s done a tremendous job of patrolling the paint and guarding the rim for us.”
For David City to be successful against that kind of size, Carraher knew his team would have to knock down shots from the outside.
But the Scouts struggled to find a rhythm for much of the game.
“We still played hard, but the mismatch was too much for us to overcome tonight, especially with the poor shooting performance,” Carraher said.
Junior Will Danielson had the best night for David City, hitting four 3-pointers for a team-high 12 points. Josh Seibert added five points and Luis Salazar and Colin Vandenberg scored four each.
David City (2-3) attempted just three free throws in the game, hitting one of them, and Lakeview was 9 for 14 at the line.
Roth would like to see that free-throw percentage increase and he wants his team to cut down on some of the turnovers that contributed to a low-scoring second half.
The Vikings scored just seven points in the third quarter and 11 in the fourth, but they met their coach’s goal on the defensive end by limiting David City to nine or fewer in every period.
“Part of that is learning how to play with the lead,” said Roth, who was also missing starting point guard Jaden Johnson for Saturday’s game.
“I thought that showed in the third quarter,” he said of Johnson’s absence. “He’s kind of a steady guy for us to handle the ball.”
Carraher told his players to forget about this game as they prepare for Thursday’s home matchup against rival East Butler.
Lakeview may be 1-5 on the season, but the Vikings are the best one-loss team in the state in his opinion.
“I know that,” Carraher said.
The Vikings, who started the season with five straight games against teams ranked in either Class B or C-1, are off until a Dec. 28 game against Schuyler to open the Columbus Holiday Tournament at Scotus Central Catholic.
David City hosts East Butler on Thursday.