One more game.
That’s what the New Haven boys basketball Shamrocks would like to get played prior to the start of next week’s Class 2 District 5 Tournament.
New Haven (14-8, 1-4) is scheduled to host Owensville Friday. Another league game, against St. Clair, had to be called off.
The Shamrocks are seeded first for the Class 2 District 5 Tournament.
The Shamrocks could have been slated to play Saturday, but have a bye due to having the top seed.
New Haven will play at home in the boys tournament as long as it stays alive at the district level. The Shamrocks have the top seed and will host either fourth-seeded Van-Far or No. 5 Sturgeon next Wednesday, Feb. 24, at 6:30 p.m.
Van-Far and Sturgeon play Monday at 6:30 p.m. in the first round.
“That first-round bye is nice,” New Haven Head Coach Aaron Peirick said. “I can go scout Van-Far-Sturgeon and hopefully prepare our team for that semifinal. I have scouted Sturgeon already but have not been able to see Van-Far in person. Being the top seed is helpful for sure.”
The other first-round game will be sixth-seeded Silex traveling to No. 3 Wellsville Monday at 6:30 p.m.
The semifinal on that side will have the winner of the Wellsville-Silex game going to Clopton Wednesday, Feb. 24, at 6:30 p.m.
The championship game will be played Friday, Feb. 26, at 6:30 p.m. The highest-seeded team remaining in the tournament will host.
“Being able to host both the semifinal and the final, if we’re fortunate to get there, should be a good thing,” Peirick said. “We still have to play well for two nights though. We are going to have to beat two good teams in order to win the district. At that point in the year, no one is going down easy.”
“And to be honest, we haven’t been great at home this year. Our biggest wins have been on the road, so we can’t get too comfortable. The line between winning and losing is pretty thin, we have to come out and play our best.”
Weather has thrown a major snowball at the final week of the regular season.
New Haven was scheduled to play both St. Clair and Owensville this week to close out the regular season.
The St. Clair games had to be thrown out due to the snow, cold temperatures and poor road conditions.
The Shamrocks are still slated to play Owensville to close out the regular season.
The Shamrocks got two games played at the end of last week.
Visiting Hermann Friday, the Shamrocks defeated Bearcats, 56-47.
“Hermann is tough,” Peirick said. “You have to play well to beat them. We were very alert defensively and made them take a bunch of contested shots.”
Peirick credited Zach Groner for working against Parker Anderson.
“Anderson got going in the first half, but even those shots were tough shots,” Peirick said. “He is a good player. Zach Groner did a tremendous job on him. Anderson didn’t get much done after his initial eight points.”
John Liggett drew Holden Ash.
“John Liggett also did a great job on Ash,” Peirick said. “Ash has to make threes in order for Hermann to be their best, and John held him scoreless.”
Peirick said the other players stepped up as well. Logan Williams, Sam Scheer and Owen Borcherding played key roles. Scheer pulled down 12 rebounds.
“Offensively, John got us going and did his thing, and a few guys went with him, specifically Zachary and Sam,” Peirick said. “We took maybe one or two bad shots all night. We also got a couple of buckets in transition, which always helps.”
Liggett was the scoring leader with 16 points. Groner netted 13 points and Scheer was next with 11 points.
Borcherding and Williams each scored eight points.
Players who struggled shooting helped in other areas.
“Jacob delivered the ball for buckets a handful of times,” Peirick said. “Logan took advantage of driving opportunities when he had them.”
Groner pulled in six rebounds, Borcherding had five and Jake Engelbrecht and Williams had three rebounds apiece.
Engelbrecht dished out four assists. Scheer added two blocked shots.
Returning home Saturday afternoon, Sullivan defeated the Shamrocks, 57-44.
Sullivan jumped out to an 18-12 lead after one quarter and was up at the half, 32-20. It was 44-34 after three quarters.
“It wasn’t our night,” Peirick said. “Sullivan is too good to have a bad night offensively against. They came out hot and eventually we guarded them OK, but they still got too many good opportunities. They executed their offense really well. We weren’t good enough at the little things, specifically getting off to the ball and guarding back screens defensively.”
Peirick said the Shamrocks struggled to get the offense going.
“Offensively, we just didn’t make the easy play often enough, and didn’t shoot it good either,” Peirick said. “We also did not attack their press worth a darn in the first half. Sullivan is good. They throw some different things at you defensively.”
Peirick felt had his team had a little more time to adjust, things could have gone better.
“Playing them on the second night of a back-to-back is hard,” Peirick said. “I wish we would have been better but we will learn from it and be better for it hopefully.”