Cameron Johnson could not be contained and Daviess County shot 83% in the second half on the way to a solid 71-60 conquest of visiting arch-rival Apollo in a boys’ high school basketball game on Friday night.
The victory improves DC to 7-19 overall and 1-5 in the 9th District, while Apollo slips to 5-22 and 1-5 in district play. A tie-breaker will decide which team is the third seed in the upcoming district tournament.
“We played to win and we played for 32 minutes,” Panthers coach Neil Hayden said. “We’ve been right there with most teams throughout the season, but we really closed this was out well.
“Our defense was pretty good. We did a good job on their bigs and we wanted to win the paint.”
It was deadlocked at 13 after one period, but DC’s Logan Hillard took over in the second quarter, scoring 10 points to help the Panthers build a 27-21 halftime advantage.
Early in the third quarter, Koki Kato’s conventional three-point play ignited a 16-4 run that pushed Daviess County in front 45-27. The Eagles sliced their deficit to 13 before a 3-pointer by Will Barron and Bo Stratton built the Panthers’ lead back to 18 entering the final eight minutes.
Twice in the fourth period Daviess County led by 20 points before a late surge by Apollo closed the gap to 68=58 with just under a minute to play — but the Eagles could get no closer.
For DC, Johnson finished with game-highs of 25 points and 11 rebounds, making 7-of-9 floor shots.
“He played well,” Hayden said of Johnson. “He was really focused and intentional on what he was doing out there tonight.”
Hillard also had a big night, producing 18 points and a game-best six assists. Ryan Thomson added eight rebounds.
The Panthers made 15-of-18 floor shots in the second half, and shot 64% for the game (25-of-39), while hitting 15-of-21 foul shots (71%). DC also dominated the rebounding (32-17) and committed 15 floor errors.
Apollo was paced by Harrison Bowman, who scored 13 points, and Malik Wilson, who had 11 points and three steals.
The Eagles shot 39% from the field (18-of-46), made 19-of-24 free throws (79%), and turned the ball over 12 times.
APOLLO 13-8-13-26 — 60
DAVIESS COUNTY 13-14-25-19 — 71
Apollo (60) — Bowman 13, Wilson 11, Ash 8, Hamilton 6, Kinison 5, Johnson 5, Frantz 4, Rhinerson 3, Girvin 3, St. Claire 2.
Daviess County (71) — Johnson 25, Hillard 18, Thomson 7, Kato 7, Barron 7, Stratton 5, Burch 2.