Playing in their season opener on Wednesday night, the Oak Hill Golden Eagles came away with a resounding victory, shooting 64 percent and playing stout defense in a 71-62 triumph over the Wabash Apaches.
“I was very pleased and pleasantly surprised at how we played Wednesday on the offensive end,” Oak Hill Head Coach Kevin Renbarger said. “We were very effective in running our offense. We struggled to score in our scrimmage and our turnovers were really high. We have also struggled at times in practice to score so our ability to really click in all phases against a very good defensive team was a great place to start the season.”
Furthermore, the Golden Eagles held Wabash, the defending Sectional 37 champions and the team that eliminated them from the tournament, to 34 percent shooting (20-of-58).
Oak Hill led from the start, taking a 16-8 lead after the first quarter before increasing that advantage to 39-23 at halftime.
“We were able to keep them out of the paint in spurts in the first half,” Renbarger said. “Offensively we were able to attack the paint through the post and on drives. That helped us to open up the outside later when we needed it.”
Four Golden Eagles finished in double figures as the team knocked down 28 of their 44 shot attempts, including 50 percent (five-of-10) from beyond the arc.
“Tahj Johnson led us with 23 points and was able to attack the basket with success,” Renbarger said. “Clay [McCorkle] had 18 and had a couple of big threes, and I think did a really good job handling the pressure of the Wabash guards who are really good. Tristen [Hayes] had 15 and was a strong presence in the post. Kody [Dubois] had 12 on four three-point shots.”
After an emphatic opening win, Renbarger is looking for Oak Hill’s strong defensive play to continue.
“We will continue to focus on limiting dribble penetration,” Renbarger said. “Our next four opponents are heavy on the dribble penetration and get a lot of success through driving the ball. We will have to continue to be good on the perimeter.”