Athens Ends Skid With Large Win Over River Valley

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Griffin Lutz was honored for passing the 1,000 career point mark before the start of Athens-River Valley and added another 21 points to his total in the Bulldogs’ 81-47 victory.

Athens completely dominated River Valley with a powerful press.  The Bulldogs didn’t allow many easy shots to the basket and the Raiders could not capitalize when they did have open shots.  Athens clogged passing lanes forcing turnovers that the Bulldogs transitioned into baskets.

Jacob Dovenbarger was the only member of River Valley to consistently get to the basket and shoot behind for threes.  Dovenbarger scored 16 points, including nine from behind the arc.

Lutz began the second quarter by picking the pocket of the Raider ball handler and drove up the lane uncontested to put Athens ahead 30-11.

Justin Hynes crashed the boards for Athens and the rest of the Bulldogs followed.  Hynes had 10 rebounds in a double-double effort.  Athens sucked up nearly as many offensive rebounds as defensive rebounds.  The Raiders didn’t follow shots and Athens was just scrappier and stronger under the rim.

A Lutz steal and pass to Dalton Cozart for three capped the first quarter and was the theme for Athens.  The ball was constantly in the hands of Bulldogs or about to be ripped away for an easy bucket.  The Bulldogs were just too much too often for the Raiders to strike.

River Valley (6-11) fared better this round with Athens than the first matchup in December which saw a 71-30 Athens victory.  The Raiders continue the season Friday against Wellston.

Athens (8-5) shredded a three-game losing skid with the victory.  The road doesn’t look easy ahead as the Bulldogs and 1,000 point scorer Lutz will see Vinton County and its own 1,000 point scorer, Tristan Bartoe, on Friday.