VAN WERT – The Van Wert Cougars finished off a five game in nine days on Saturday night as the Cougars welcomed the Coldwater Cavaliers for boys’ non-conference action. Van Wert used a big third quarter to pick up a 60-46 win over Coldwater on Relay for Life night at the Cougars’ Den.
The Cavaliers took an early 8-7 lead with a 3-pointer from Mitch Balster. The Cougars scored six straight points before a put-back bucket from Justin Schwieterman of Coldwater brought the score to 13-10, Cougars.
Van Wert drilled back-to-back triples from Drew Bagley and Blake Henry to go up 19-10 before the Cavs went on a 6-2 run to close out the first quarter, getting to within 21-16.
Coldwater tied the game at 21-21 in the second quarter as Marcus Bruns drained a 3-pointer and a layup from Cole Frilling.
The game went back and forth and was tied at 23, 25, and 27 in the second quarter. A Bagley layup put Van Wert up 29-27 before the Cavaliers got a triple from Jacob Wenning to put the Cavs ahead by a single point. The Cougars ended the first half with a trey from Owen Treece to make the score 32-30, Van Wert.
Van Wert opened the third quarter with a 10-2 run, getting six points from Jacoby Kelly as the Cougars went up 42-32. The Cougars' big third quarter continued as Van Wert held Coldwater to just six points and closed out the half on a 8-2 run to bring the score to 50-36, Van Wert.
The Cavaliers got a 3-pointer from Cole Frilling and a layup form Bruns to cut the Van Wert margin to 52-41. After Coldwater cut the Van Wert lead to 54-44 with a trey from Jacob Wenning, the Cougars got a layup from Nate Place and four made foul shots from Treece to ice the game away.
“Our ball movement tonight was outstanding; I think last night we only had five assists, I bet it’s a lot higher tonight," Van Wert head coach Mark Bagley said. "I thought Jacoby [Kelly] did a great job of attacking down hill, and once we started to do that we are hard to guard.”
The Cougars improve to 8-7 on the season and Coldwater drops to 6-8 on the year. Van Wert gets a much-needed break before playing on Friday night against the rival Bulldogs of Elida.
“We knew we had a rough two weeks coming, but we are getting healthier," Bagley said. "Our guys aren’t talking about wins and losses right now, we are talking about 'trust the process and doing today well and getting better for tomorrow.' All of our guys have bought in and all playing their roles well. We get two days off before we prepare for Elida, but I can’t tell you how special Friday will be as we are playing one of our rivals in Elida and we will be honoring Coach Fro for his hall of fame nomination on Friday night.”