Team Effort, Balance Pushes Trimble Over Eagles for Sectional Title< < Back to
WELLSTON, Ohio – Win or go home was the motto for the Eastern Eagles and the Trimble Tomcats as they squared off in the sectional finals on Wednesday night. This game was unlike both regular season matchups as Trimble jumped out to an early 13-4 lead and didn’t look back as they took home the win 61-42.
In the regular season, the Eastern Eagles gave the Trimble Tomcats some trouble in both meetings, but this time around with their season on the line, the Tomcats delivered one of their best all-around performances.
After the Eagles jumped out to an early 2-0 lead, the Tomcats answered by scoring 13 of the next 15 points in the game. This was significant considering the Tomcats got off to some slow starts in many of their games towards the end of the season including the Eastern game back on Jan. 17.
Once Trimble took the lead, they didn’t let up on the gas pedal as they outscored Eastern in every quarter except the final quarter, where Eastern outscored Trimble 19-18.
Leading the way for the Tomcats was Blake Guffey who finished with 23 points, seven rebounds, four assists and three steals. Guffey played one of his more impressive games start to finish as he opened up making his first six field goals inside the three-point arc. He finished shooting 9-for-12 from the field including 5-for-7 from the charity stripe.
Guffey had the tough task of matching up with Eastern center Garrett Barringer and Guffey handled the tough task with ease. Barringer had a very impressive game with a team-high 17 points but give the Tomcat senior a lot of credit. Barringer was forced into a lot of tough shots early on, some of which he scored, but Guffey played a very impressive defensive game on Barringer.
Fellow Eastern senior, Colton Reynolds, also scored in double digits with 11. Both Reynolds and Barringer played their final game in an Eastern uniform and they left it all out on the court, even opting to stay in the game until the very end according to Eastern Head Coach David Kight.
Guffey wasn’t the only Trimble player to make a difference on Wednesday night. Overall, it was a team effort all the way around and like the second half of the Southern game, the Trimble Tomcats appeared to be in prime postseason form.
Both Tyler and Brayden Weber scored in double figures with Brayden scoring 10 points, but Tyler had an even larger impact as he scored 15 points. Tyler Weber also added eight rebounds as his strong play has earned him a spot in the starting five on a consistent basis now. Like his older brother, Tyler Weber adds a similar game as he can be a spot up shooter from deep and a strong finisher in the paint.
Trimble senior guard Cam Kittle had another impressive performance grabbing a team-high 10 rebounds while also adding seven points. Even more impressive was the fact that Kittle only finished with one turnover on the night. He did an excellent job playing his role as floor general and making smart decisions on offense.
Overall, Trimble proved why they were the 3-seed and Eastern was the 14-seed by dominating the game from start to finish. The Tomcats came into this game determined to win and they made sure the Eastern Eagles had no life throughout the whole game. However, Eastern did have a very respectable season, but just found themselves on the wrong side of some very close games including games against Trimble and Federal Hocking, the two teams that finished at the top of the Hocking standings.
Up next for the Tomcats is 11-seeded South Webster who knocked off 6-seeded Symmes Valley 56-54 on Wednesday night. That game is set to take place on March 3 at the Convocation Center. A win on March 3 could give Trimble a rematch against New Boston Glenwood, the team that knocked the Tomcats out of the playoffs in 2019.