Girls Win, Boys Lose in Holiday-Shortened Week for Vinton County

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After the Vinton County boys’ and girls’ basketball teams celebrated the holidays with their families at the beginning of the week, they finished up the week on the hardwood.

The Lady Vikings kept their undefeated season alive Saturday, defeating Amanda-Clearcreek 63-47 at Teays Valley High School.

Vinton County (9-0, 4-0 TVC-Ohio) continued to play a team-oriented game as four players achieved double figures in scoring: Morgan Bentley led the game with 18 points, Tegan Bartoe had 13, Josie Ousley added 11 and Cameron Zinn contributed 10. The Lady Vikings never trailed in the game after surging out to a 9-2 lead early on. Amanda-Clearcreek (6-4) put together a valiant effort, led by Alyssa Evans with 18 points, but Vinton County had no trouble as it continues to establish itself as the team to beat not only in the TVC-Ohio, but in all of Southeastern Ohio.

The Vinton County boys’ team Thursday traveled to Chillicothe and dropped a non-conference game to Zane Trace, 65-52.

The Vikings (3-3, 2-2) trailed by nine points after the first quarter, even though the Pioneers (9-1, 6-0 Scioto Valley Conference) put up 22 points in the first eight minutes of play. VC had two players in double figures, Gavin Arbaugh with 17 points and Trafford Dunn with 11, and three more close behind: Will Arthur added nine, Ricky Body had eight, Ash Abele scored seven.

The team is still without Eli Griffith, the Vikings’ only returning rotation player from last year, after he injured his ankle against Nelsonville-York last week.

“Obviously, that was tough, playing without [Griffith],” head coach Matt Combs said. “Zane Trace is probably one of the top five D2 programs in our area to begin with. They’ve only lost one game. Going on the road without Eli made it tough.”

Combs still had high praise for his squad.

“I was pretty proud of the way our guys fought and responded,” he said. “We were within seven points late in the second quarter, it was a nine-point game at halftime, it was a nine-point game at the end of the third, we were right there. We just couldn’t get over the hump. [Zane Trace] is a really good team.”

With all that said, Combs is never satisfied.

“They’re down in the dumps because they lost, and that’s a good thing,” he said. “We don’t ever want to get to the point where we accept that. But they’re growing. . . . I can promise you we’re better tonight than we were three weeks ago.”

Vinton County is back in action after the new year; the boys will travel to Jackson next Friday and host Southeastern on Saturday, while the girls hit the road Saturday for another non-league game against Gallia Academy.