COLUMBUS -- Scotus Central Catholic blasted Lakeview 52-27 at the Columbus Holiday Tournament in December.
Shamrocks head coach Jarrod Ridder expected a much more competitive game from the Vikings (9-11) on Tuesday night at Lakeview High School.
He got it. But Scotus (16-5), No. 7 in Class C-1, was able to withstand Lakeview’s best shot and get out of there with a 46-39 victory.
“Anytime we play up here at Lakeview, it’s a battle,” Ridder said.
An 8-0 run in the third quarter gave the Shamrocks a 7-point lead and a 12-6 run over the first seven minutes of the fourth period allowed Scotus to pull away.
“I give Lakeview a lot of credit,” Ridder added. “They came out and played aggressive and played with a lot of confidence. They made a lot of things difficult for us.”
It was a balanced night scoring for Scotus, which had four players score between nine and 11 points. Kendra Wiese had a game-high 11 points, knocking down three 3-pointers in the first half to help out the Shamrocks’ offense.
“Kendra Wiese stepped up big tonight,” Ridder said. “We always have kids step up and tonight was another example of that.”
Bailey Lehr and Maggie Feehan scored 10 points each and Marika Spencer added nine.
“That’s kind of who are,” the head coach added. “We score by committee. It’s hard to guard that way.”
For Lakeview, their defense played well enough to get the win, but it shot just 24 percent from the field. Eventually, Scotus was able to break away.
“That’s the difference right there,” Lakeview head coach Monte Jones said. “We had some great opportunities and didn’t cash in.”
Ali Janssen led the Vikings with 10 points while Gracie Borer and Morgan Bignell added eight points apiece.
Scotus got off to a strong start, taking an 8-4 lead early on behind five points from Lehr and Wiese’s first trey of the game.
Four straight points from Janssen and a bucket from Makenna Klug put the Vikings in front 10-8. Spencer put the Shamrocks back up with six straight points as Scotus led 14-12 after the first quarter.
The Vikings stifled Scotus offensively most of the second quarter, but two more 3-pointers from Wiese allowed the Shamrocks to get into the half knotted at 20-all.
Trailing 27-26 midway through the third quarter, Scotus scored eight straight points to go up 34-27 before Klug hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer to make it 34-30.
The Shamrocks made 6 of its first 9 attempts at the free throw line in the fourth quarter to extend the lead to 46-36. When Scotus started missing down the stretch, Lakeview was without Janssen, Borer and Abby Kapels, who had all fouled out of the game.
The Vikings were unable to take advantage and close the gap.
“I was proud that we were still fighting at the end,” Jones said.
The Vikings have their home finale on Thursday against Central City. While the Bison aren’t to the level of Lakeview’s recent competition, Jones isn’t taking them lightly.
“Central City scares me too because they’ve got some athletes and have been in a lot of close games,” he said. “We can’t take a breath.”
Scotus finishes the regular season with its fewest losses since 2007, also five. Now the Shamrocks are focused on subdistrict play.
“We just have to keep getting better,” Ridder said.
Jones hopes his team gets one last shot at Scotus there.